The Seeing Eye is an international non-profit that breeds, raises and trains dogs to guide people who are blind and visually impaired.
Placid chalet? Or taking an exclusive, behind-the-scenes tour at a zoo? Or cuddling up with a handmade quilt covered in Labrador puppies? Lucky for you, ALL these unique experiences and 550 other items are up for bid during our 10th Annual Online Auction! And of course, all proceeds benefit The Seeing Eye. Go to the link in our profile to start bidding!
A Day in the Life of Maria Hevner, Senior Manager for the Seeing Eye Clinic and Breeding Station “Whenever I catch up with my friends and family on the phone, they always stop me and say. ‘Wow. You really love your job don’t you?!’ And I have to admit ‘I really do!’ <<laughs>> I’ve worked at The Seeing Eye for 19 years, and I’m as happy today as I was the first day on the job. I manage and supervise a staff of 14 including the veterinary technicians and breeding station assistants. I also oversee the 74 volunteers who help us at the Seeing Eye clinic and the breeding station.
Before I applied, I’d never even heard of The Seeing Eye. At the time, I was helping run five veterinary hospitals in New Jersey. I liked it, but there was no room for advancement and I wanted to do something more meaningful. I started looking through job listings in professional journals.
When I saw the ad for The Seeing Eye it caught my eye. My background is in social work, but when I emigrated to the U.S. from Austria, it was difficult to pursue my social work career here. I wound up returning to school and becoming a certified veterinary technician. When I saw that ad, I thought, ‘Oh, how perfect! That would let me use BOTH my skill sets as a social worker and a veterinary technician.’ The organization does important work and it’s unique in the world. Austria offers its citizens a very good system of socialized medicine but there are no guide dog schools. They don’t exist.
It wasn’t until my family in Austria came to visit and saw The Seeing Eye campus for themselves that they could FULLY comprehend the scale of the operation we run. How big it is, how many dogs we take care of, how many puppies are born in the breeding station. At any given moment, we’re caring for as few as 40 puppies or as many as 100 puppies.
A Day in the Life of Dr. Dolores Holle, Lead Veterinarian and The Seeing Eye’s Director of Canine Medicine and Surgery "When people find out I work for The Seeing Eye, they ask me if I train dogs. I don’t. I explain that I try to bring the dogs into the world healthy and keep them that way for as long as possible. Whenever I’m at the Breeding Station in Chester, I start my day by checking on the new mamas and their puppies. When I see the puppies, the word adorable comes to mind. I really enjoy seeing them start to figure things out, from the earliest moment of propelling themselves forward to find mom’s milk, to snuggling in puppy piles, to romping fearlessly across a wobble board. I have pretty busy days, but sometimes I take a moment or two and just watch them. When I do, I can feel my blood pressure lowering.
Occasionally I have lunch with our students and graduates. Listening to their stories keeps my passion for The Seeing Eye’s mission alive.
I think I have one of the best positions available in veterinary medicine. On any given day, I’m doing all different kinds of medical work. I love that about the job. I also get to witness on a daily basis what I think is the highest form of the human-animal bond -- a Seeing Eye partnership.
At the end of a workday day I may feel excited, energized, exhausted, delighted, sad, or any other number of emotions. I’m very lucky and honored to do what I do. I have several young cousins in Ireland who wear Seeing Eye t-shirts and want to become veterinarians and take care of guide dogs because of me. I’m really proud of that.”
The Seeing Eye recently enhanced the student training experience by adding #AmazonEcho to the mix. Hear the story in the words of Seeing Eye dog owners here: https://www.amazon.com/p/feature/arn39fp3k67f8ft #SeeingEyeDog
Lilly the black Lab is sitting in the foreground wearing her puppy bandana. Kelly the sable shepherd and Eiffel the Black and Tan shepherd are sharing a sweet moment in the background, as they rest and greet each other.
Some members from The Seeing Eye team of riders are shown getting ready to join the start of the Gran Fondo NJ. Good luck to all the riders!
The Seeing Eye is looking for volunteer puppy raisers! You and your family can nurture a puppy to accomplish its special destiny. Families should live in New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania, New Castle County in Delaware, and parts of Maryland and New York. Visit SeeingEye.org/raise to learn more.
Slate cheese board customized with The Seeing Eye logo. You can chalk mark your cheese selections.
Visit www.biddingforgood.com/seeingeye on April 25 to place a bid.