Shannen Doherty isn’t letting her battle with cancer prevent her from helping other souls in need.
The actress walked the red carpet at the Animal Hope and Wellness Foundations’ Gratitude Gala with founder Marc Ching, just days after revealing that she had finished her chemotherapy treatment.
“I feel great,” she tells PEOPLE at the event. “I feel great, I feel lucky. Lucky that I’m here, lucky that I’m standing next to Marc, lucky that I get to be a part of this foundation, lucky that we get to be a voice tonight for the voiceless and just lucky.”
The lifelong animal lover says that she felt compelled to be part of the foundation thanks to Ching’s inspirational work.
“I’ve had a few heroes in my life. My dad, who passed away six and a half years ago who was my best friend and absolute hero, and Marc,” Doherty says. “Marc is a hero to me and I look up to him and I admire him. I don’t know how many times I say to myself like, ‘I wish I could be him. I wish I could do what he does. I wish I could be change like he is change.’ So, I called them and begged to clean dogs, to do whatever I had to do.”
Doherty first revealed her diagnosis to PEOPLE in August 2015. “Yes, I have breast cancer, and I am currently undergoing treatment. I am continuing to eat right, exercise and stay very positive about my life,” she wrote in an exclusive statement. “I am thankful to my family, friends and doctors for their support and, of course, my fans who have stood by me.”
Since she first opened up about her cancer battle, the actress has frequently documented the ups and downs of the diagnosis on social media, including shaving her head, her first day of radiation and going to her appointments with her mother by her side.
Recently, Doherty praised members of her medical team for their support and encouraged followers who are fighting similar battles. “Never be too timid to speak up and ask for what you need to get thru the process,” she penned in a December post. “None of this is easy but a great team can make it more pleasant.”