Fundraising Ideas From Second Chance Animal Shelter
by Elisa Black-Taylor
Chrissy needs a home
August 2010: This is going to be a good read, my friends. It's full of fundraising ideas being put to use by Second Chance Animal Shelter in Brooksfield, Massachusetts. All you'll need today is a cup of coffee and a pen and paper to take notes. No Kleenex and no tears!
These folks are really using a lot of brain power to raise funds for their no-kill facility. Please feel free to send this article to your local shelter or anyone needing some really unique ideas to raise money for the unwanted pets who fill our shelters.
Second Chance Animal Shelter is a 501(c)3 charitable organization whose business revolves around placing abandoned and unwanted pets into good homes. Since the shelter opened in 1999, more than 10,000 pets have been matched with loving homes. They place more than 3000 yearly.
Their Facebook page is under Second Chance Animal Shelter and just topped 500 fans. Let's show them some support and up this number. They also have an official website at: Second Chance Animal Shelter.
The first thing I'd like to mention is the shelter just received the go ahead from the Guinness Book of World Records to attempt to break the world record for largest vaccination clinic. This will take place in October. What a great way to help pet owners by offering low cost vaccines and getting some free publicity at the same time.
This outstanding group is also offering event after event this summer. I'm going to list a few of their ideas as other shelters could use them in their area. I hope shelters everywhere will use Second Chance as an example. With the exception of Irving, Texas, I've never seen so many good ideas in one place. Here's that story.
1. Greeting cards with photos of their shelter pets. You can purchase 12 over-sized blank cards for $25. These can be used for any occasion.
2. Party for pets. This is to encourage children to help animals from a young age. When a child has a birthday party, they simply ask for gifts to be brought for a pet. The child receives a t-shirt and a party package showing participation. After the party the pet toys are taken to Second Chance and the birthday child is given a tour of the shelter. This is SO great!
3. Food for Pantry Pets. Donations may be dropped off at the Second Chance shelter and monetary donations can also be made here. The shelter has also teamed up with Petco in Auburn and Shrewsbury for food donations. Currently there are five food banks the shelter supports but them will add more as the need for assistance in feeding household pets becomes greater.
4. SCAS Visa Platinum rewards card. The issuing bank will donate $50 to the shelter upon first use of the card. Plus the cardholder and the shelter can continue to earn rewards.
5. Second Chance cookbook. It's available for $10 at the shelter or $12 by mail to cover postage. What a great idea! I know of a lot of churches that have done this, but this is a stroke of genius!
6. On August 28, 2010 they'll be holding a giant yard sale from 8 a.m. To 4 p.m. The address is 372 N. Main Street, Brookfield, MA. All proceeds will benefit the shelter.
7. Then on September 5, 2010 they'll have Critter's Second Chance Poker Run. For those of you in other counties, a poker run is a group of motorcycle riders who ride for good causes. They pay an entry fee, buy a meal before or after the ride, and make a day enjoying their motorcycles and the good company of other riders. It's awesome to see dozens of riders going down the road to support a worthy cause.
And I may as well mention low cost spay, neuter, vaccinations, feral TNR, fostering, sponsoring a pet, volunteers and recognition of school age children who help the animals. It would be great if caring for pets would change the hearts of future animal abusers before a pattern is ever set.
Speaking of ferals, I must mention how this shelter is handling the issue of feral cats using a different approach. While most shelters do not try to adopt out ferals, Second Chance works with the community to TNR these cats at a low cost. They have a form on their website. It's necessary to include household income as this service is funded thru grants and donations. They have a "working farm" program. A working farm is considered as having at least one barn and growing produce or raising farm animals and has at least one barn. The TNR may even be free in some cases.
They also want to hear from those who own working farms who would be interested in the re-homing of feral cats. This is such a great idea. Every farm needs cats to kill field rats who would otherwise contaminate the grain supply.
The work of Second Chance Animal Shelter hasn't gone unnoticed. In 2007 they placed in the top twenty in the national Zootoo contest and won the contest in 2008. In 2007 they won the Worchester University Partnership Award for College Students' Community Engagement. They've also received special recognition by Zootoo for spay/neuter outreach.
I could write enough on this great organization to fill a book. Instead, I've asked for added comments from the folks who run the shelter. Hopefully they'll read this article and cover anything I've missed.
I closing, I'd like to share this memorial page with all of you. Here's are some of the beautiful pets adopted from the shelter who have crossed the Rainbow Bridge.
Maybe you do need a Kleenex. Sorry.