Duster’s Ark volunteer shortlisted for national award

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AN animal sanctuary volunteer, whose connection with animals ‘changed her life’, has been shortlisted for a national award for her efforts.

Hannah Thompson, a volunteer at Duster’s Ark animal sanctuary in Northwich, has been shortlisted for Volunteer of the Year in the Petplan & ADCH Animal Charity Awards 2022.

Volunteering at the sanctuary has been lifechanging for Hannah, helping her to cope with depression and anxiety.

The Petplan & ADCH awards recognises the remarkable work carried out by animal charities and not-for-profit organisations across the UK, Ireland and Channel Islands.

This year’s winners will be announced at a celebratory lunch hosted by comedian and TV presenter Zoe Lyons on May 18 in London.

The celebration will include finalists from the 2020 and 2021 awards to recognise their ongoing hard work and commitment to animal care and provide a face-to-face opportunity to celebrate.

Commenting on her nomination, Hannah said: “Being nominated for this award means such a lot to me.

“All I have ever wanted to do is rescue and help animals, so it has been such a privilege to work and learn from Duster’s Ark.

“I get all the rewards I need from the animals; this nomination just makes me feel really thankful.”

Hannah is on the autism spectrum and suffers from Ehlers Danlos syndrome.

Her mum Jennifer added: “Volunteering at Dusters Ark has literally changed Hannah’s life.

“At 14, we had to withdraw Hannah from school as the environment was just not right for her.

“She was really struggling with depression and anxiety and was finding it tough to leave the house.

“This compounded her physical health problems, so we contacted Duster’s Ark to see if she could do some volunteering.

“Over the past five years, with continuous support from Cat and Jonathan and the love of the animals, she has gained knowledge, skills and confidence and is looking forward to starting a degree in animal management, behaviour and welfare later this year.”

For further information and to view a full list of finalists, visit petplan.co.uk/charityawards.


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