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Dr. Kevin Fitzgerald: The season for giving
Do not be a Scrooge this season. Give back to your community.
The season for giving
Veterinarians enjoy a truly wonderful profession. We get to blend animals and people, science and medicine, technology and ethics. In a time in which the public is increasingly distrustful, people still trust their veterinarian. This goodwill, this esteem, was built on the backs of the veterinarians that came before us. They got involved, they volunteered, they sat on boards and appeared at grade school career days, they judged at science fairs and started shelters, and they contributed. They realized that they were an integral part of the fabric of the communities that they lived in, that they were needed, and that they had something to give.
Veterinarians are gifted people. With great gifts, come great responsibilities. We are obligated to give something back to our communities. Reading programs and literary projects, endeavors with feral cats, therapy dog visits to hospitals and to the elderly, timely news columns concerning animal-related topics in local and regional newspapers, and appearances on local television news shows involving public education about animal topics are just a fraction of the opportunities that we have to give back to our hometowns.
Organized veterinary medicine at the local, regional, and national level needs your continued involvement and certainly beckons. Setting up local continuing education for veterinary technicians and public education seminars to deal with pressing topics in your area and developing canned programs that local veterinarians can present at the schools are just a few ways that we can make real offerings from which many can benefit.
It is our duty to stay connected and involved and not just at this time of year. We can complain about the state of our communities, our young people, and our profession, or we can do something. It is our responsibility to give, a part of our duty as veterinarians. Do not be a Scrooge this season. Give your greatest gift: yourself and your time. Share your gifts; you won't be disappointed.
See you next week, Kev