July 27, 2022, Belleville, Il.–
The Belleville Area Humane Society (BAHS) is so very grateful for their community. Yesterday as the waters rose around Belleville Area Humane Society and St. Clair County Animal Adoption Center and Animal Services (SCCAC), THE COMMUNITY SHOWED UP. The evacuation at the Adoption Center and Animal Services building started there at 6am. Over 40 animals were transported to safety by The Public Building Commission, the police and fire departments, Belleville Area Humane Society, Gateway Pet Guardians, Stray Rescue of St. Louis, Helping Strays of Monroe County, Partners 4 Pets, St. Clair County Emergency Management Agency, St Clair County Highway Department, Bi-State Pet Food Pantry, Helping Hounds Dog Training, Robert Trentman, Shelly Tribout-Korves and Jack Korves, Jamie Anderson Case, Mark Kern. Countless neighbors stopped by to help when their own houses were flooding, and the community dropped off supplies, snacks, and good cheer.
BAHS Executive Director, Kim Vrooman states “We were wet, we were tired, we were challenged, but we are so very GRATEFUL today to our friends in the community; especially our WONDERFUL VOLUNTEERS, FOSTERS, AND ADOPTORS who came to the rescue. We are located just across the street from St. Clair County Animal Services and I think sometimes folks don’t realize how much the county does over there to support safe pet ownership and services. We were happy to support them yesterday. They are heroes.”
Vrooman goes on to discuss the ongoing emergencies the animal welfare industry faces every single day, “People were just outstanding yesterday, but our community saw first hand literally what is a figurative emergency flood in this industry everyday.”
She notes that St. Clair County is celebrating a win of achieving a 98% save rate (98% of all animals that are brought into the animal welfare system make it safely back into the community via adoption, or return to owner) by the end of 2020-ahead of schedule while there is a national desire for all shetlers to reach at least 90% by 2025 and while some counties in the US are still at a 40% save rate or lower.
BAHS and their fellow St. Clair County Animal Welfare Coalition members (St. Clair County Animal Services, Gateway Pet Guardians, St. Clair County Animal Advocates, and others) want their community to celebrate the win of the 98% save rate NOW! Still, they hope folks will also better understand that this is achieved by keeping animals in their homes and out of shelters. They hope the community will see the “flood” that is happening everyday in animal welfare and continue the vital and necessary support that was shown yesterday into the future of next week, next year, and beyond.
Vrooman comments, “If you find a dog on the street, look around, neighbors may know where she belongs. If you know someone who is down on their luck and considering surrendering their animal, help them learn about resources such as the BAHS Pet Resource Pantry that provides meals and tools for pet owners who find themselves in under-resourced situations. We can help people keep their pets.”
And she finally shares, “Fancy dogs are cute, but please consider making adopting from a shelter or rescue a priority when adding furry family members. Please resist purchasing dogs from puppy mills and over producing breeders. Until they all have homes, it is the right thing to do.”
Belleville Area Humane Society, and the Coalition also thank the community for continuing to fund their greatest needs so they can keep helping our community of animals and their humans! If you would like to become a monthly supporter, make a one time donation, or even come serve a volunteer shift, BAHS and others always in need of support.
About Belleville Area Humane Society (BAHS): The Belleville Area Humane Society, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, has been serving St. Clair County, Illinois for over 63 years. Animals in the community are valued, cared for, and treated with compassion. Funded 100% through donor support, BAHS improves the lives of animals in our community through adoption (800+ animals last year), humane education (1000s of phone calls answered through our hotline), and community outreach (140,000 meals and 1000s of community pets served). Services provided include: foster and volunteer opportunities, affordable spay/neuter options, low cost vaccine and microchip clinics, emergency veterinary assistance, and a monthly pet food pantry. To donate, volunteer, and learn more, please visit www.bahspets.org.