CORNER BROOK — The Newfoundland West SPCA is back to fundraising in order to eventually move into its new shelter.
Judy Mahoney, president of the organization formerly under the name of Bay of Islands SPCA, said it is with “great sincerity” they are asking the public for pledges and will be holding various fundraising events and activities in the coming months.
The animal activists and caretakers are in need of approximately $350,000 to complete the move into the facility recently purchased on the north shore of the Bay of Islands. A fire suppression system has to be installed and various plumbing, electrical and other infrastructure issues have to be addressed before animals can be kept in the building.
The move was expected to be completed for some time now, but the massive rescue of more than 200 cats from a property on the east side of the city is the main reason for the continued delay. Not only were volunteers and resources focused on caring for and trying to find homes for these cats, but money targetted for the new shelter renovations was also spent on the rescue and adoption effort.
It is now expected to be at least spring of 2013 before the move to the new shelter is made. To get there, Mahoney says the public will once again have to come through for the organization.
“There’s so many good causes and good organizations that are out there, and everybody is out there trying to raise funds,” she said. “In the city, people are tapped out. It’s a small city, and (the population) is shrinking, and there’s only a couple of major employees here. It is not a wealthy community, and the people are so generous.”
The generosity of the public was recognized by the local SPCA for much of the success in the rescue and adoption of about 80 per cent of the east side cats — before a bacterial infection led to the euthanizing of the rest. The public was also instrumental in years of fundraising efforts — through the Second Chance Shelter Fund — which led to the acquisition of the new building.
The major fundraising drive this time is canvassing for pledges. They are seeking donations of $350 from 1,500 people or groups, and these donations will be recognized on a wall at the shelter. To help lessen the burden locally, there are public service announcements going to places like Fort McMurray, Alta. to solicit former Newfoundlanders.
In the meantime, Mahoney said there has been some cleaning and upkeep done at the current shelter located in the Curling part of the city.
The old facility has its challenges, but she said they will continue to make do as best as they can throughout the winter.