Lock in for Love and spending time with a furry friend is open for Prince Rupert residents to come out and support the local BC SPCA on June 23.
The annual provincial fundraiser is being held for the first time in the city, with all donations generated staying at the Prince Rupert branch. The goal is to raise $7,500 to assist with care costs, food, medical costs and general items.
The non-profit organization is the only branch in the north between Prince Rupert and Quesnel and services a vast area, Joe Griffith, branch manager said.
With the recent influx of more than 127 felines from another northern community, shelter resources are stretched to accommodate and provide care and medical services in the north.
The Lock-in for Love will be held in two sessions from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the city branch on Prince Rupert Blvd. and from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. The location will be closed during the lunch period.
City Councillor Barry Cunningham promised to dress in a dog costume to support the cause with members of Prince Rupert Fire Dept. and various organizations from around town invited to participate. Cunnigham publically issued the challenge at the city council meeting on June 13, for people to match his $100 donation.
Participants can call ahead to register or can walk in. Volunteers are asked to provide up to an hour of time to be “locked-in” a room spending time with a cuddly buddy while generating donations for the SPCA. All donations can be made online at Team Prince Rupert SPCA or by cutting and pasting the link: https://lockin.spca.bc.ca/participant/2439813/2680
The Lock-in for Love coincides with the June announcement of provincial adoption fees being reduced by 50 per cent for adult cats from June 20 to June 30 to help free up space in shelters.
“Our shelters are overwhelmed with cats as we’ve been responding to many cases this year where up to 100 cats are being rescued at one time from hoarding situations,” said Lorie Chortyk, general manager of communications for the BC SPCA.
“Just this month, we took in 120 cats from a property in northern B.C., and these kinds of cases are happening all around the province. This time of year is always very busy with incoming animals, and these large-scale intakes place additional demands on our facilities and resources.”
The SPCA is receiving increasing appeals for help on properties where hoarding situations have become out of control, Chortyk.
“Some people are just overwhelmed with the number of animals they are caring for,” Chortyk said. “COVID, the rising cost of living and mental health challenges are all playing a role in this increased need for help. We encourage anyone who has been thinking about adopting a pet to take advantage of this promotion. You will not only be providing a loving home for a deserving animal, but it will also allow us to create the capacity to help more abused and neglected animals.”
K-J Millar | Editor and Multimedia Journalist
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