Panhandle Humane Society partners with local activist to support pets in Ukraine | Local4 min read
Every morning, Glenda Larson wakes up, turns on the news and says she begins crying. She sees the distress of innocent pets and animals getting caught in the middle of the Russia-Ukraine War. She recently decided she wanted to do something to help them, even from the other side of the globe.
Larson began with researching credible non-profits dedicated to helping the animals in Ukraine. She found Network for Animals (NFT) and UAnimals. She then set up a Facebook page dedicated to animal rights, though she is not much of a social media person herself, she said.
The Facebook page is called Spotty N Stripey, which acts from the point of view of Larson’s two cats, adopted from the Panhandle Humane Society (PHS). Larson then got the idea to potentially partner with the humane society on this fundraiser project.
She reached out to PHS to see if the organization would be interested in using pets in need of homes here to show their support for the pets in Ukraine, offering little blue and yellow bandannas and ties for them to wear. The PHS staff happily agreed.
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Larson suggested setting out donation jars around town, which will then be periodically collected by PHS. Half the money collected will go to the shelter and the other half would go to Spotty N Stripey, with Larson saying she plans to donate to the two pet relief non-profits via Facebook, “where everyone can see it has been donated,” Larson said.
She wanted to be able to help animals near and far, and show that they all stand for Ukraine.
PHS director Amy Bartholomew said she thought the fundraiser idea was promising for all animals involved.
“It’ll help dogs here — dogs and cats,” she said. “And then, for a bit of time … half of that will go to Ukraine animals there to help them out.”
The donation jars are yellowish-orange dog canisters, and Larson hopes to include the blue and yellow bandannas next to them as a gift to those who make a donation to the cause. In the meantime, PHS pups will sport the Ukrainian colors to show their loyalty to the pets in Ukraine.
“We are very excited to see that animals everywhere, no matter even if they … are suffering hard-times, are passionate about standing for and supporting all the animals in Ukraine,” Larson said via her Spotty N Stripey Facebook page.
Currently, donation jars are set up at Pioneer Animal Clinic and Midtown Animal Hospital. Any business which would like to participate in hosting a donation canister can contact PHS at 308-635-0922.
“We are hoping when the patrons of our own animal clinics are paying their bills, they will put a little pocket change donation in our jars to help animals that are in so much need,” Larson said. “Our own animals are so lucky to have us and we, them. I figured even with things as tight as they are these days financially, we and our animals can share a little of what we have to help animals that have nothing and need everything.”
Eventually, Larson said, when the war dies down or gets resolved, she would like the canisters to stay up at businesses and support PHS full-time.
“When the situation in Ukraine gets resolved and there is nothing else we, out here, can do, hopefully, the collection jars can still be kept in place with 100% of the funds collected (going) to help our local animals,” she said.
Larson is also looking for individuals interested in volunteering to help make the blue and yellow bandannas. If interested, contact her via the Spotty N Stripey Facebook page.