Taking a Chance

How A Pageant-Winning Associate Brings Joy to Kids

PetSmart associate Treisy Cuevas-Torres is a beautiful person, inside and out, that wears many hats. The 2018 Miss South Carolina U.S. International and 2019’s Miss U.S. Landscapes International also serves as Vice President of LoveUnited International, a global assistance group for schools and communities in need. After joining PetSmart in October 2017, Treisy was inspired by the Chance & Friends toy program, which allows customers to donate our stuffed animals—Chance the dog, Lucky the cat, Hope the rabbit and Dream the lamb—to local animal or children’s causes.

“Everyone loves stuffed animals and Chance and Lucky toys are the perfect gift to change the lives of so many children,” she says. “After Hurricane Maria hit Puerto Rico, I realized many children would not have a Christmas.” Store Leader Don Johnson helped her organize a shipment of Chance & Friends toys to an elementary school in Ponce, Puerto Rico.

That was just the beginning. In 2018, Treisy toured the Cancer Society of Greenville, South Carolina, and distributed toys to “give a reminder to always have hope, remember to dream and believe that every day is another lucky chance.” In the summer of 2019, she will travel to Jamaica to donate school supplies and Chance & Friends toys to schoolchildren.

“I was very proud that she wanted to spread happiness and cheer with Chance & Friends,” says Johnson, who notes that by this summer, she will have donated over 200 stuffed animals to kids in need. “We can’t always see the faces of the kids we help, so it’s nice to see through Treisy how a simple toy can affect them.”

Treisy is equally touched by the excitement and gratitude she encounters when she hands out Chance & Friends toys. “I look forward to continuing to make a difference in the lives of many, not only locally, but internationally with the help of PetSmart and all the amazing customers that help make this possible,” says the pet mom to Rolo, a 2-year-old Labrador Retriever-pitbull mix, and Bella, a 5 year-old-German shepherd mix. “It’s important to me because I understand how it feels to not always be fortunate.”

That’s why she has her own Dream stuffed animal, “to remind me to always work towards my dreams and goals of making a difference.”