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COVID-19 Pandemic Leaves Tri-County Animal Rescue Center in Need of Volunteers, Donations
(PHOTO: An adoptable pet at the animal rescue center about to leave for a new home. Photo courtesy of Tri-County Animal Rescue Center.)
Debbie Stephens told exploreClarion.com, “It (the COVID-19 Pandemic) has definitely had a negative effect on us.”
According to Stephens, who is the secretary and a board of directors member of Tri-County Rescue Center, the rescue center is only available by appointment for those considering an animal for adoption, and they are asking visitors to wear masks.
Stephens explained that since the rescue center isn’t open to casual visitors, the animals miss the social interaction. Additionally, casual visitors often make much needed donations to the organization.
Because the rescue center had to cancel several fundraisers as a result of the pandemic, including the annual Easter Bunny event, those donations would have been particularly helpful.
“The loss of those fundraisers is probably the biggest downside for us,” Stephens noted.
However, the lack of donations isn’t the only loss.
Due to the cancellation of in-person classes at Clarion University for the latter part of the spring semester, the rescue center also lost many of their student volunteers.
“They (the students) made up a large portion of our volunteer base, and that has left us short on volunteers.”
Stephens went on to say that she hopes more people start reaching out to help at the rescue center.
“There are still people that aren’t working right now, and it would be a good way to fill up some of their time.”
While the lack of fundraisers has left Tri-County in need of monetary support, they are also in dire need of donations of many of the supplies they use on a regular basis. In particular, supplies for their kittens are needed, such as Purina Kitten Chow (yellow bag), KMR Kitten Milk Replacer powder, clumping litter, and IAMS Perfect Portions for kittens, as well as topical flea and tick treatment for both cats and dogs.
Bleach and other cleaning supplies are also needed because of the additional cleaning during the ongoing pandemic.
Stephens pointed out that regardless of the COVID-19 Pandemic, the flow of animals arriving at the center hasn’t changed.
“The one thing that hasn’t slowed down (is) people calling and asking us to take cats and dogs.”
Currently, the rescue center is at capacity for cats and kittens and near capacity for dogs and puppies. Nevertheless, on the bright side, they have been doing well in terms of the number of adoptions.
The Tri-County Animal Rescue Center is located at 9562 Route 322, Shippenville, Pa.
For more information, visit their Facebook page here.
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