Grunions Running? Get Involved!


Every week, KCET will be bringing you ways to GET INVOLVED in your community. We believe that just one person can always be an agent of change, but we also believe that by coordinating our efforts and connecting around things we care about we can make a huge difference. Building a better L.A. starts with you, so get informed, get out there, volunteer, and spread the word!

In honor of the upcoming Grunion Run, this week we are bringing you learning and volunteering events catered especially for lovers of animals, be they creatures of the land, air or sea. Watch the grunions make their way to shore, then make your way to a local shelter and help some creatures who make L.A. their home all year long.

The Grunion Greeter Project March-April
For the next two months, you are not allowed to catch grunions as they make their way to shore, but that doesn't mean you should miss out on watching their arrival. The Cabrillo Marine Aquarium has guided observations of the fish as they emerge from the ocean to spawn. Go give the grunions an appropriate picture-taking-L.A. welcome!

Rabbit Care @ Pet Save
For all the bunny lovers out there, imagine a volunteering gig that involved mostly playing with the rabbits? Perfect? Well, the Pet Save Foundation (site here) lets you do just that. You, do, of course have to a bit of bunny-grooming and some other cleaning, so wear old clothes that you do not mind getting dirty. Visit the L.A. Works page for more information about age requirements and signing up.

Los Angeles Animal Services
If you're interested in more than bunnies, consider becoming a volunteer with Los Angeles Animal Services (site here). They want volunteers who "are committed, caring and responsible to truly make a difference in the lives of the abandoned and homeless animals in our care."

Furry Fun @ Friends of Animals
For this project, volunteers have to be at least 18 years of age. Twice a month, volunteers "walk dogs, feed cats and socialize with the animals, bringing some positive energy to the shelter as the animals wait for a new home." It is indeed a day of 'Furry Fun!' Don't have time to volunteer but still want to help? Friend of Animals Foundation has a Wish List up on its site with items that kind-hearted individuals can drop off.

Adventure with Apes @ The Gibbon Center
Once a month, volunteers head over to the Gibbon Center, a sanctuary for the endangered small ape, the gibbon. This nonprofit facility located in Santa Clarita welcomes volunteers who want to help maintain the grounds and ensure a safe and healthy environment for the gibbons. Volunteers clear brush and trim trees to guard against fire, assist with maintenance of the grounds and build and repair the wooden structures that house the gibbons. Volunteers are also provided with a 30-minute tour of the facility. Learn more about being a volunteer here and about the Gibbon Center here.

With so many ways to Get Involved, making L.A. a better home for animals is sure to be fun!

We want to see you and your group GET INVOLVED and make L.A. a better place. Upload your pictures to the Southern California Flickr Pool and follow us on Twitter so you can tweet your experiences. We also want to hear from you here! Did you go to an event? What did you think? Do you know of any volunteering event happening in Los Angeles? Share your thoughts and GET INVOLVED.

Image by Flickr user kalavinka using a Creative Commons License.

-Yoli Martinez


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