A Diamond Springs animal shelter has qualified to compete for $100,000 and other monetary grants from the ASPCA/Rachael Ray Foundation $100K Challenge, thanks to more than 14,000 votes from supporters over a 12-day period.
Animal Outreach of the Motherlode ranked 15th out of 104 shelters nationwide, and was competitive with some of the largest shelters in the country in terms of vote-getting.
“I am just blown away at the amount of support we received from the Sacramento-area community,” said Animal Outreach of the Mother Lode Director Maggie Killackey. “To be up there with some of the biggest shelters in the country is kind of humbling.”
Killackey says the hard work is now just beginning.
Each of the 50 groups remaining in the competition now must adopt out at least 300 more pets from August through the end of October than they did for the same period last year. That means Animal Outreach of the Mother Lode will have to find adopters for at least 865 pets in the three-month period.
“We’d like to strive to save 1000 dogs and cats. Studies show there are more homes seeking to adopt a new pet than there are pets in the shelters. This campaign will help us promote adopting from shelters whether it be Animal Outreach or any of our adoption partners, like El Dorado County Animal Services or City of Sacramento Animal Care, that are overburdened and are faced with killing for space limitations,” stated Community Outreach and Operations Manager Kathy Anderson.
Two local El Dorado County businesses, Togs for Dogs in El Dorado Hills and Pampering Pickle in Placerville, have committed to offering pet adoptions at their locations to help Animal Outreach win this challenge.
Ultimately, the group that places the largest number of pets will win the $100,000 prize. However, prizes will be awarded for other things. For example, the shelters that save the most additional lives in each of the five designated divisions in the U.S. will win $20,000, the shelter that does the most to engage community support will win $35,000, and the shelters that achieve the biggest increase in lives saved in each Division will win $10,000.
“Obviously, $100,000 would be nice, but any of those prizes would be huge for us,” said Killackey. “We are a non-profit that must rely on donations to continue our efforts.”
“Facebook engagement is how we are judged for the Community Outreach award,” said Anderson. “We post our successes and our needs daily and need the community to share and participate.” The group’s Facebook name is AnimalOutreachRescue, and the Website is animaloutreachcats.com.
Last year, Animal Outreach of the Mother Lode provided homes for more than 2,500 animals and performed more than 10,000 low-cost spays, neuters or vaccinations.
The mission of Animal Outreach of the Mother Lode is to reduce the number of cats euthanized in the area by providing low cost spay/neuter programs and education of the public, and to protect the welfare of the animals it comes in contact with, and promote the humane treatment and well being of these animals by:
• Providing shelter and medical care for stray or abandoned cats in El Dorado, Sacramento and Placer counties.
• Responding with personal commitment, humane sensitivity, compassion and technical skill to the needs of these animals.
• Actively promoting suitable adoptions of the animals.
• Encouraging the spay and neutering of dogs and cats to ensure the numbers of unwanted animals be kept to a minimum; and helping to prevent cruelty to animals by promoting animal welfare legislation and education.