Helping those in need

Helping those in need

Story by Kyle DeVries

In 2015, Kallie Campbell graduated from Cox College’s ASN program, ready and eager to enter workforce in constant need of dedicated, caring professionals. She spent the first couple of years serving the patients in the Medical Intensive Care Unit (MICU) and Cardiac Arrest Unit at Cox South before ultimately moving to the Cardiovascular Catheterization Lab.

“Cox College provided me and many other students the chance to explore career possibilities we may not have thought of before,” said Kallie. “The faculty was really wonderful and made a big impression on students.”

No one ever said nursing school would be easy. Aside from the difficult workload, the time and dedication the program demands of its students can also be overwhelming. Students may forget the way time outside of school, as was the case with Kallie.

Once she completed her education, she found herself with more time on her hands than she’d had in a long while. But in the spirit of a true healthcare professional, Kallie decided this extra time would be best spent helping others. With that in mind, she began looking for volunteer work, and crossed paths with Rescue One.

Rescue One is a local organization dedicated to rescuing dogs who have been abandoned by their former owners or are currently housed in kill-shelters. The objective is to find these dogs a loving, permanent home—but this is no small task, and the facility itself has limited space.

This is where Kallie comes in, providing a temporary home for dogs who have yet to be found by their forever-family. Alongside her husband, Kyle, Kallie has fostered more than 100 dogs in two years. The duration of stay fluctuates—some dogs might be guests for a few days, others for several months, but all are welcome. So far, two of Kallie’s fosters have permanently joined the family, reaping the benefits of a loving home with an endless supply of playmates. At one point, Kallie’s home was the refuge of 19 dogs. A mother and her puppies were in need of emergency shelter, and Kallie welcomed them into her home, in addition to the seven dogs already under her care. “It was very temporary,” Kallie says. 

“And it was chaos. It probably won’t ever happen again.”

Kallie’s background in nursing made her a natural at caring for others—even if these patients came with four legs rather than two. One of Kallie’s charges was a three-pound puppy whose nose had been half-bitten off by another dog. The puppy’s nose became infected, and with her immune system compromised, she developed pneumonia and demodectic mange. Two nose reconstructions and many months of care later, the puppy found her forever home, where she thrives today.

“My favorite thing about fostering is placing dogs with awesome adopters,” said Kallie. “There is nothing better than helping a dog who has been let down by humans work through their issues, and then finding them an amazing home. Without foster homes, some of these dogs wouldn’t have had any chance in the world.” 

For Kallie, serving those in need is a vital part of who she is—both at work and at home. 

Check out Rescue One’s website and all of their current adoptable pets at RescueOneSpringfield.com. 

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Author’s note: My wife and I adopted Mira, one of Kallie’s fosters, in November of 2018 (pictured above). Rescue One was very thorough in its application process in making sure that we would be a good fit for Mira. We are thankful for Rescue One and for great people like Kallie who provide safe places for dogs.