Supporting homeless, essential workers, and their pets: Sandhya Jadu is a Woman of Yarra

Woman next to tree smiling into camera with white dog next to her

During March, to celebrate International Women’s Day, we are celebrating the women of Yarra, and sharing stories from exceptional women who live, work or volunteer in the City of Yarra.

Sandhya’s story

“I do pet sitting in my spare time, and during the COVID-19 stage 4 lockdown, I realised people needed support to exercise their pets while balancing work, home schooling and navigating lockdown.

I started offering help to people in the community and supported them by walking their dogs and checking in with them. During COVID I did this every day.

I was fortunate to be able to support some essential workers who were working overtime and covering shifts for their peers who had to quarantine.

Freyja (featured) belongs to an essential worker who works in the disability sector. Looking after Freyja was an opportunity to help her owner.’

Selfishly, it also helps me because it gives me time out from my busy work life and is great for my wellbeing. I very much believe in pet therapy.

I think all animals add a beautiful presence to our lives. What’s not to love about animals? They unconditionally love you back.”

About Sandhya Jadu

Sandhya is a social worker at Melbourne City Mission and looks after the youth crisis intervention team, helping people experiencing homelessness find safe and secure housing. She is an advocate for social justice, equality and consumer voice. In addition to her role, she undertook work on the weekends providing support to people experiencing homelessness during the pandemic who were housed in hotels across Melbourne.

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