by Lorraine Payette, written July 2, 2013
(KINGSTON, ONTARIO) Ms Hessell’s Grade 5/6 class at Bayridge Public School in Kingston was happy to go out and help the Gananoque and District Humane Society once again on June 26, 2013 with their second annual classroom fundraiser.
“Once again we’ve raised money for the Gananoque and District Humane Society,” said Hessell. “John and Diane (Seymour) have come in once again to accept and to talk to our class about what it means. We sold freezies, we made and sold friendship bracelets, fancy bracelets, bookmarks. We had a raffle for Jolly Ranchers, which was a big hit, and this was all over one lunch hour. All the kids pulled together and made posters – 26 students – and we raised $208.90.”
This phenomenal effort shows just what young people can do if given the chance. They chose the Gananoque Humane Society due to its “no kill” policy, and are more than happy to help out in any way they can.
“Without the Humane Society, we would have so many stray cats and kittens running around making more cats and kittens,” said Diane Seymour. “We’re an integral part of the Gananoque front page. We have, as of this morning, probably about 120 cats in the shelter. Some little wee tiny ones and one fellow, whom I just met this morning, who’s got seven toes on the front and six toes on the back, so he’s got two extra toes on the front and one extra on the back. He’s very, very, wiry – just wound for sound – very friendly, very affectionate, but of, my goodness, he just doesn’t stop. But he’ll slow down a little bit as he gets used to things. He’s just nervous about being in a new place where there are so many other kittens.”
The shelter is filled with wonderful cats. Every cat that comes into the shelter is spayed or neutered, and they have all their injections – rabies, feline leukemia, distemper, etc. – and everything is up to date.
“They’re pretty well guaranteed to be healthy, so if you come in and you adopt a cat, we assure you that everything is done and they’re ready to go,” said Diane. “We’ve got a lot of cats who’ve been there for a long time. They’re usually in our quiet room – the older, more sedate folk that don’t like to be around the young ones with all the extra energy.”
The donated money is added to the funds required to run the Shelter. Each animal costs about $400 to prepare for adoption – shots, surgeries, etc. – and the adoption fee is $135, a bargain by comparison.
“When we got 22 little kittens in back in April, at $400 a kitten, that’s a lot of money for us to raise,” said Diane. “Your donation helps pay for things like this. It also buys their food and kitty litter, so we never seem to have enough money, but we manage with what we get.”
The Shelter receives no government funding, no consistent funding from any outside group or organization, so they fund raise year round in order to keep the good works going. Efforts include cupcake sales, the Fur Ball, a gently used clothing sale, and other events all designed to help promote and raise funds for the GDHS. Donations such as this one from the Bayridge students are always more than gratefully accepted.
“I mentioned this in the fall, and the students were all revved up to do the fundraiser,” said Hessell. “We were able to raise in one lunch hour by selling freezies, they made their own friendship bracelets, key chains, bookmarks, Sam even brought in some jewellery that she had from home, so they all contributed to this wonderful affair. And in one lunch hour we were able to raise a total of $208.90. We sent a big thank you out on the intercom the next day because it wouldn’t have happened without the students participating and without these
great environmentalist animal lovers practicing citizenship, thinking of others and not just themselves.”
It takes time to pull something like this together and it was busy. All kinds of activities were going on as they tried to do anything to make it the biggest possible success.
“We would like to offer this to the GDHS in honour of the Bayridge Community in his area,” said Hessell. And with the cash donation, they presented a poem tat they had written for the Shelter:
We are fuzzy and furry
We need someone to throw our toys
We are in a hurry
To find a home to enjoy!
We love to cuddle
Don’t mind us if we are dusty
We may play in a puddle
Especially if we are a husky!
We love to go for walks
Some of us need our naps
We follow lasers like hawks…
We hope you will adopt dogs and cats!
Although no dogs are housed at the Shelter, they are not turned away. Instead, they are placed in foster homes where they, too, are prepared for adoption into loving families. To learn more about the GDHS, please go to http://www.ganhumanesociety.ca/, call them at 613-382-1512 or check them out on their facebook page.