The Library will be closed on Wednesday, June 19, 2024, in observance of Juneteenth.

Teens Leading Change: Platt’s Paw Protectors: Raise Awareness

Guest Blogger,
Platt Branch teen volunteers

Platt’s Paw Protectors aims to raise awareness about shelter animals and the proper ways to care for them, therefore helping to prevent the mistreatment of shelter animals. The main goal of our project is to raise awareness about the importance of adopting or fostering dogs and cats in shelters due to the mass number of pets who need a forever home. Our group aims to help eliminate the number of shelter pets who are alone in the world and to influence others to adopt or foster pets, giving them the love they need while educating those who may not know how to properly take care of these furry friends.

I happily have a dog and a cat of my own, and appreciate the Paw Protectors project, especially because I believe that animals deserve all the love and attention in the world. Before I became a pet owner, I never realized the amount of dedication it takes to have a pet, especially hyperactive ones such as mine. I was skeptical at first, but the closer I got to my pets the more I loved and enjoyed the time I spent with them, and this new experience taught me the amazing memories you can make with these furry friends. I also strongly recommend checking out local shelters since that is where I got my dog and cat, and they are the light of my life. I think this venture will be a great tool for people learning about what it takes to have a pet and can show the paw-sitivity and benefits of owning a pet of your own while also showing the benefits of adopting pets from the shelters that just want to find a forever home. While these pets may just be a great memory years later, we are their whole life. It is up to us to make sure our furry friends can make the most of it!

—Written by Sophie Apolaya

Sophie Apolaya is a volunteer at the Platt Branch and a 10th-grade student at El Camino Real Charter High School. She is an enthusiastic volunteer who loves to work on projects that make a paw-sitive and significant change in her community.

—Jennifer Watson, Young Adult Librarian, Platt Branch Library

The Teens Leading Change initiative has funded and launched 52 projects across 60 branches with over 600 participants, including 9 projects across 10 branches that are happening now! Go to for more information.