How I got
involved: the short story version
In 2017 I saw a post on Facebook that a friend of mine had shared. It was asking for volunteers for Holderness Hedgehog Hospital, a small rescue for hedgehogs run from someone’s house and garden.I knew nothing about Hedgehogs but they were cute so thought I might be able to help on my days off.
I started to follow their Facebook page and when I saw that they were holding a fund raising event at a local pub, I popped along.
I got talking to a few of the volunteers and saw how much they enjoyed it and loved helping so I decided to join.
A few weeks later at 9:30am I turned up for my first training session. I learnt how to handle, clean out and weigh the hedgehogs in HHHs care.
Soon I was going along each morning on my days off and then I started to help organise volunteers for each day, making crafts to sell at events, attending car boots to raise funds plus ‘over wintering’ hedgehogs until the spring.After 6 months I was approached and asked if I would like to be a trustee as HHH was applying to become a Charity.
I was both overwhelmed, excited and scared as I’d never done anything like this before!As the group of ‘trustees’ we started to have meetings and began the process to becoming a charity.This involved a lot of reading about the process, what was expected of us and HHH if we were successful and after a lot of hard work on the 29th June 2018 we were able to announce this:
Hedgehog Hospital is now a registered charity
Registered charity number 1178929
after many months of hard work and a mountain of paperwork we are now a
This was just the beginning!
I attended a first Aid course for Hedgehogs and I soon learned how to medicate, check samples and be able to assess the hedgehogs coming into our care.
At this time there weren’t any other rescues in the area so our rescue soon became too small, I was also finding the volunteering tiring as my work shifts had changed and the 30mins traveling each way plus the 3 hours there was too much.As such I started to house rescued Hedgehogs at home full time. Any hedgehog that had already been assessed, out of the danger zone but still needed treatment would come to me. I started with 1 then 2 then 3. This saved me a huge amount of time as I no longer had to travel every day.
We as Trustees met every 3 months and made best practice plans and looked towards the future. During the summer of 2019 we put into place our biggest plan! It was exciting but again scary.
Instead of one rescue we decide to have smaller rescues dotted around the Holderness area. This was one of the best decisions we ever made and I became an assessor and an on call volunteer.
I had 3 cages which became emergency places, I bought myself a microscope and on my days off I would have the emergency phone transferred to me, the rest as they say is history.
These days I have space for 12 emergency cages, I assess, triage each Hedgehog when on call and arrange transport to our other rescues if I have no room. I treat the hedgehogs in my care and also train new volunteer foster carers plus other responsibilities we as Trustees have.
I also still work full time but I wouldn’t change it for the world! The work is tiring, upsetting when you can’t save them all but rewarding when you release a hedgehog back into the wild where they belong.Who’d have thought that in late 2017 I liked a Facebook page and as we start 2021 I’m now part of this amazing Charity and working with such amazing volunteers and supporters.