Letter to the Editor:
I didn't know! About a month ago, I talked with someone about the new Animal Shelter and we were wondering when it would open. My husband and I went out to see the Shelter and see what they were working on at the time. Well, I didn't know that most of the internal construction was being done by volunteer labor because there just wasn't any money for that. That made total sense to me so we started donating labor to that cause. I knew there was money borrowed for the building and asked if 'they' were having any luck in getting donations to pay for that. I didn't know that a letter had been sent out to businesses and community members asking for help, but they had very little response. Do you remember the wonderful response the community showed when the building down town was being considered for the shelter and they were denied access? I thought there would be a large overwhelming response, but, I didn't know how it really was. I occasionally have a conversation with someone who asks why the Shelter is not open now that they have a building. My response is always that they need help and that I didn't know either. A friend asked me how any people would be 'on staff' when they opened. My response was that there is no money for staff! With the loan to pay and animals to be cared for, there probably wouldn't be for a very long time. I really didn't know before that all the monies the Shelter receives comes from adoptions (which don't cover the expenses incurred) and grants (which require all funds given to be specifically used only for the purpose of the grant) and donations! That means that the only way to pay for the building is through donations. They do have Paw Print Plaques for large donors to be hung on the wall and memberships for individuals and families. We are still working on the shelter whenever we can and there are others who have as well. But I often wonder, and I think back to myself how I just didn't know! So I thought I would put this note in the paper because I believe many people just aren't aware of the need. I am hoping that many of you will join me in volunteering, now, and after the building is done, and donating to a very worthy cause. If you aren't sure why we needed a Shelter, give Kristy a call. She has many stories to share.
Marlene Walthart, Estherville