Foster Volunteers Urgently Needed – Joanne’s Foster Experience

At the Georgian Triangle Humane Society (GTHS), each Volunteer plays a vital role within the organization. These volunteers make a significant impact in our community, and they are the heart and soul of the GTHS.

The GTHS is always looking for dedicated volunteers in a variety of areas, however, after seeing a 47% increase in the GTHS Foster program in 2022, the need for Volunteers willing and able to foster and care for vulnerable animals is at an all-time high.

Joanne Brown has been a Foster Volunteer since April 2021 and has found the experience to be rewarding. She wanted to share her experience with those who may be considering becoming a Foster Volunteer.

“I have fostered 54 beautiful babies; the longest stay was about 8 weeks and the shortest was overnight. The largest crew I had was 13,” she says.

Joanne, who has a senior cat at home named Daisy, decided to start fostering animals after being introduced to the program while Volunteering onsite at the GTHS.

“My favourite thing is, of course, the kitten snuggles, but a close second is how much joy they bring to our house – watching kittens run and play and wrestle has kept us laughing for hours,” she says. “It is very rewarding to be able to help socialize these babies so that they know how to snuggle and play in their forever homes.”

If someone is thinking about becoming a foster volunteer, Joanne points out that it does come with some challenges. “Some kittens are not great eaters, or they are suffering from digestive issues they acquired where they originally came from.”

She adds, “Like any mom, you worry about whether they are going to get better, and when they finally turn a corner, and then you see them start to gain weight, it is the most amazing feeling!”

However, dealing with health concerns is not the hardest part of fostering for Joanne. The most difficult part in her experience is when the animals are ready for adoption and need to go back to the GTHS She says, “The very hardest part is bringing your foster babies back to the GTHS to have their spay/neuter surgeries and to get ready to find their forever homes – your home feels like it has a big hole in it for a couple of days.”

In the end, if anyone is unsure about fostering, Joanne understands and appreciates this feeling. However, the support Foster Volunteers receive from the GTHS goes a long way in helping make the experience a success for all involved.

“Fostering can be scary at times – these little lives are so dependent on their foster parents – but the staff at the GTHS are so supportive and helpful in whatever situation you encounter,” she reveals. “I’m lucky enough to be in touch with a few of the families who have adopted some of my foster babies, so I am getting a chance to see them grow up and bring joy to their new families.”

The GTHS is lucky and thankful to have amazing Foster Volunteers like Joanne and others who bring so much compassion into caring for animals. If you are interested in becoming a cat, dog or emergency boarding Foster Volunteer, the GTHS urgently needs your help today! Please submit a foster application form to email

Stay informed on GTHS events, initiatives and programs. Learn how the GTHS team is serving the pets and people of the South Georgian Bay Area. Read heart-warming Happy Tails about GTHS Alumni. See a lot of really cute pictures of dogs and cats!