You already know that you and your staff members have a direct influence on animals' well being. But as the holidays draw near and the minds of many turn to giving, there is also a way for the average person—including your clients— to contribute to an underserved segment of U.S. companion animals: the pets of the homeless.
Just before Thanksgiving each year, the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH) and the National Student Campaign Against Hunger join forces in promoting National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week. In this nationwide effort, schools and cities collaborate to heighten awareness of the plights of the homeless and the hungry.
While the general public has become more conscious of these crises, the underlying problem of pets of the homeless goes largely unnoticed. The NCH estimates the U.S. homeless population to be 3.5 million and speculates that up to 10 percent of that group has at least one pet. This is a burden on both pets and their owners, who are responsible for the animals' food and shelter, a fact made all the more difficult due to their circumstances.
Now, the organization Feeding Pets of the Homeless is sponsoring more than 200 volunteer/collection sites around the country, which accept donations of pet food and supplies. These items will be distributed to the needy via food banks, homeless shelters and the like. In addition, Feeding Pets of the Homeless makes available grants to participating licensed veterinary clinics that provide basic checkups and treatments.
If you’d like to know more, visit Pets of the Homeless.