This year, building and strengthening bonds has been more important than ever. Through adoptions, foster and our Pet Resource Center, we provided protection for pets and people, ensured beloved pets stayed in their homes and welcomed new foster families who opened their homes to save animals.
As adoptions slowed and we feared overcrowding, our community stepped up to save lives. For one first-time foster, this experience changed more than one life.
When the pandemic kept Sharon home, she realized she had more time and wanted to do something to help animals. As Sharon browsed available dogs to foster, Patsy’s photo and story stood out.
Patsy had arrived at our shelter traumatized, and it took time for staff to earn her trust. Sharon describes meeting Patsy as two lost souls connecting. “I’m not sure why I was attracted to her, something just clicked, and I knew she was coming home with me,” Sharon said. She knew immediately that she wanted to adopt Patsy but was committed to the goals of our foster program to provide a peaceful and positive environment, so every animal can find a forever home.
Over the next week, the connection grew stronger. Patsy became more confident, trusting and playful, a complete turnaround from the dog who arrived at the shelter. A few potential adopters visited Patsy, but they weren’t the right match. In Sharon’s heart, she knew they didn’t fit because Patsy was meant to be part of her family. Less than a month after bringing her home, Sharon welcomed Patsy to her family for good. “I believe when you’re ready, you don’t adopt a dog. They find you. Patsy found me, and now, I can’t imagine life without her.”
Sharon’s story could be shared with any one of the 1,098 first-time fosters we trained this year. Thanks to your support and donations, countless pets, who otherwise might not have had anywhere to go, were welcomed into new foster homes.
Being a resource for both pets and people is at the heart of our mission, and this year the Pet Resource Center has been busier than ever. As neighbors across our community felt the pandemic’s financial impact, they faced unbearable decisions about providing for their family and pets. Many pet owners, like Cindy, found relief through our Pet Resource Center.
For months before the pandemic shutdown, Cindy came home from work to a verbally abusive partner but found a safe haven with the unconditional love of her furry family member, Shadow. When Cindy lost her job, the abuse turned physical, followed by a threat on her and Shadow’s lives. She knew she had to escape. A social worker found a safe place for Cindy to live, but Shadow couldn’t come with her.
Fearing for Shadow’s safety, Cindy wasn’t going anywhere without him. Her social worker informed her of temporary emergency boarding through Young-Williams Animal Center’s Animal Haven program. Knowing Shadow would be safe, Cindy agreed and could now work toward stability and independence – free from violence. Without support from donors like you, Cindy’s story could have ended very differently. Today, she is reunited with Shadow, and they are both safe.
In this unprecedented year, we worked even harder to meet the needs of our community. Through September 2020, we have handed out more than 13,000 pounds of free pet food, provided financial support for medical treatments and supplies, and kept more than 7,600 pets with their people and out of the shelter. That’s three times more than 2019! In addition, more than 1,000 people signed up to be a first-time foster parent, and nearly 3,100 pets have been adopted into loving homes – and we couldn’t have done any of this without you.
Won’t you please help us provide more happy endings for pets like Patsy and Shadow? Your passion for vulnerable animals is what keeps our work going. We are so thankful to have your continued support and hope you will consider making a gift today to ensure we can meet the needs of our community’s pets and pet owners tomorrow.
With heartfelt gratitude,
CEO, Young-Williams Animal Center
P.S. Your annual gift can have an even greater impact by supporting us all year. Select the “make it monthly” box on the the form below to become a Constant Companion.