Compassion, Care, and Forever Homes: One Shelter's Christmas Gifts For Their Animals
An inspiring community effort in Charleston, South Carolina makes the holidays even more special each year, for families and for animals in need. The Charleston Animal Society is a 145-year old shelter that emphasizes care and compassion.
In 2013, Charleston Animal Society became a no-kill shelter, a change that its director of community engagement credits to the community. Despite the fact that they receive about 9,000 animals a year, the organization has successfully maintained its no-kill policy. "The only way we can do that is when people come in and adopt animals, and help us save their lives," she says.
The shelter goes to great lengths to make sure that their animals are ready to become happy, healthy pets. Dogs, cats, rabbits, and any other furry friends receive on-site healthcare, so that even abandoned animals can get a second chance at life. This is especially true during the holidays, when the shelter kicks off their Home for the Holidays campaign!
"Nobody wants to spend their holiday in a cage," says Kay, the director of community engagement, summing up the inspiration for the Home for the Holidays idea. It's a brilliant move: Charleston Animal Society invites people to come visit and consider adopting in the lead-up to Christmas, and when animals do get adopted, the shelter offers to drop off the new family member on either Christmas Eve or Christmas morning!
"We deliver them like Santa's elves!" says Courtney, the director of adoptions.
Helping Charleston Animal Society in the Home for the Holidays campaign is another member of the city's business community, a car dealership called Hendrick Automotive Group. Volunteers from Hendrick handle pick-ups from the shelter and drop-offs at the animals' new homes. Sometimes, so many volunteers sign up to help that the cars form a caravan—almost like Santa's reindeer!
With all of the emphasis on buying, giving, and receiving gifts around the holidays, it's inspiring to see such energy around the Home for the Holidays campaign, where nothing is purchased or sold, but much is gained!
Original story via AOL