"Our Best Friends" is a monthly installment to honor just a few of our outstanding Best Friends LA volunteers. This is your chance to get to know some of the shining stars in the Best Friends LA volunteer program! Volunteers are either nominated by Best Friends LA staff or other volunteers in our program. If you would like to volunteer, email the Best Friends LA Volunteer Department at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Kathrin Nguyen - Honored December 2018
What BFLA programs/events/volunteer roles do you find yourself participating in?
I started volunteering in the Dog Team and then received training to work in the Cat Team - working as part of the Gray Paw crew. I also started helping out with the Kitty City program and have been honored to be a Trainer for new volunteers, who want to join our Cat Team. I am always happy to help out with whatever Best Friends may need; I appreciate and enjoy the trust and friendships shared among the team members.
Why do you choose to volunteer with Best Friends LA?
I've always been a pet lover; specifically a cat lover! When I moved to Los Angeles, my husband and I didn't own a pet so I found NKLA because I was looking for a place to volunteer and potentially find a pet to adopt. Growing up, I always had a furry friend as a pet, whether it cats, guinea pigs, or birds, so I definitely miss the daily interactions. I remember the first time that I stepped into NKLA; I just had a good feeling about the place! The people were incredibly nice and shared my passion of helping animals. The volunteers and staff members are amazing and I am happy to be a part of this team. I am surrounded by adorable animals and incredible people so there is no better combination than that!
How long have you been a BFLA/NKLA volunteer?
Almost a year!
Do you have a favorite story to share about an experience volunteering with Best Friends LA? Share it!
I have a lot of great memories at NKLA! I love working with older cats and am always looking forward to spending time with those cuties; I work with them so much that I feel like they are all my own! It is especially great to see some cats gaining confidence and forming personal bonds with me. I really get to know their personalities and I love them like they are my own. The happiest moment for me is when I see each cat get adopted. It is a great feeling to know that you are working for the goal of no-kill. My proudest moment was when I got asked to train new volunteers. It is an incredible feeling to train energetic people who are willing and able to contribute to our common cause. It is always great to bump into my former trainees as they start their volunteering journeys!
What do you do when you're not volunteering (career/extracurricular activities)?
I work from home - running a digital content network. This means that I spend hours at the computer, so I enjoy my weekly volunteering. When not working, I love to explore the surrounding Los Angeles area. When I have the chance, I also enjoy traveling to different countries like recent trips to Japan and Mexico. My passion, beside animals is food! I am curious about different flavors and tastes. I like being active on the weekends - enjoying hiking, tennis, and biking.
Do you have any pets? Tell us about them!
I always had animals when growing up. In May 2018, we adopted Magnus, a senior cat from NKLA. I met him while volunteering and couldn't believe that no one adopted him. He was already 13 years old but still had the energy of a young cat. He is the sweetest and easiest cat I've ever had. My husband and I are grateful that he came into our lives because he has been a joy! Especially when you wake up with a paw in your face :)
What others are saying about Kathrin:
Kathrin is awesome! She has been such an incredible cat team volunteer for not only our cats, but for new volunteers as well. Kathrin is a Gray Paw Cat Volunteer and a Volunteer Trainer/Mentor! She is a natural teacher, a very talented cat handler, and pretty much one of the nicest, warmest people you will ever meet! We could go on and on about how much she means to our team, she is that great! We appreciate her hard work, her energy and her passion for helping us care for our cat kids. Thank you, Kathrin, for all that you do here! You work makes a difference at our center! -Justin (Volunteer & Staff Engagement Coordinator)