It’s National Volunteer Week, and we at the AVMA hope you will join us in thanking the countless volunteers who dedicate their time and efforts to make our work possible. National Volunteer Week is an initiative of the Points of Light organization, and celebrates “the impact of volunteer service and the power of volunteers to come together to tackle tough challenges, and build stronger, more resilient communities.”
Volunteers are the lifeblood of the AVMA. We’re fortunate to have more than 600 volunteers who donate thousands of hours to the association and the profession each year in a variety of roles. Here are just a few examples of how the AVMA, and the entire profession, benefit from the hard work of volunteers:
The AVMA Board of Directors, officers, and dozens of committees, councils, panels and task forces are made up of volunteers who provide expertise to influence the key issues affecting veterinary medicine. From helping to plan and execute the AVMA annual convention and topical symposiums, to conducting site visits at veterinary colleges for accreditation purposes, AVMA’s officers, directors and other entity leaders are essential guides who help us protect, promote and advance veterinarians and veterinary medicine.
Subject matter experts and leaders across the veterinary profession serve as volunteer speakers and presenters, sharing their knowledge with the greater veterinary community at a variety of events, including AVMA Convention, annual meetings, symposiums, webinars and more. We also rely on the expertise and input of veterinarians and other professionals as we develop resources and educational tools for the profession.
Our advocacy efforts are made stronger through the voices of more than 30,000 individuals who make up the AVMA Congressional Advocacy Network (AVMACAN). This community of veterinarians, veterinary students and friends of veterinary medicine bolsters our advocacy work by reaching out to lawmakers on legislation that impacts our profession and by sharing their personal stories on important issues. AVMACAN volunteers play a key role in standing up for the veterinary profession and safeguarding the future of veterinary medicine. The participants in our annual legislative fly-in also play a crucial role in amplifying the voice of veterinarians and ensuring that veterinary priorities are heard in Washington.
Volunteers participate in community programs that advance the work of veterinarians and support local communities. For example, the dedicated professionals who volunteer in our Reaching UP program perform hundreds of spay/neuter procedures and provide other essential services to traditionally underserved Native American communities each year.
These are just a few examples of the important work of AVMA volunteers, and there is so much more. From spreading the word about new AVMA resources and programs, to lending support at AVMA events, our volunteers are critical to our success every day. That’s why we thank them during this National Volunteer Week, and we ask you to consider joining their ranks. To learn more about how you can make a difference, please visit avma.org/volunteer. You can find a current list of open positions on our governing entities at avma.org/volunteeropenings.