The recently formed non-profit known as the Proactive Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) of Benton County is pleased to announce the end of a successful first year. Their mission is to serve as the fund-raising and support arm of Benton County Animal Shelter (BCAS), to aid financially in the prevention of cruelty of animals, and to promote the spay/neuter of pets, pet adoptions, and community outreach and education programs.
Nothing that PAWS accomplished would have been possible without the support and generosity of numerous pet-loving donors and volunteers, both within and outside of Tennessee.
In the interest of transparency, PAWS wanted to share that they raised over $18,000 through corporate grants, business sponsors, membership fees, and material, in-kind and monetary donations to help the animals of Benton County. Operating expenses were kept to a minimum, so that over $12,000 was used for PAWS’ mission. They were able to start off 2023 with funds to go to work for the animals.
The majority of funding went to support BCAS. PAWS paid vet bills to treat pets that shelter funds, which come from the county, would not have been able to cover, allowing these pets to be placed for adoption. They purchased vaccine supplies to help prevent diseases. Additionally, donations were made by PAWS to various funds to assist owners who might not have been able to treat their pets due to financial reasons.
PAWS set up a Chewy account page where donors can order food and supplies for BCAS without leaving their homes, have it delivered to BCAS, and receive a tax deduction for it. PAWS started a Chewy campaign for BCAS in July, and within five days, over $1,000 in food and supplies was delivered to help the shelter. To donate to BCAS, view their wish list on Chewy at https://www.chewy.com/g/paws-of-benton–county_b97642777.
PAWS participated in the 30-mile yard sale with donated items, raising $1,800 through sales and $300 in donations. With the remainder of the items, they set up a booth at Two Sisters Marketplace. Through their generosity, we continue to maintain it with donated items, which brings in a steady income to help the animals. If you have gently used, quality items that you would like to donate to the cause, please contact PAWS. All donations are appreciated!
Through Amazon Smile, PAWS set up an account where they receive a percentage of donors’ purchases through Amazon. If you use Amazon, you can help a charity of your choice, and it doesn’t cost you anything. Check it out at https://smile.amazon.com/ch/88-1552976.
The group received a grant from PetCo Loves for 300 cat and 300 dog vaccines for diseases such as feline leukemia and parvo. They held a free clinic in November with 63 vaccines provided for dogs and 29 for cats. They plan to hold additional clinics in March, June, and September 2023. Specific dates will be announced soon, and volunteers will be needed to help on those days.
A website was donated and maintained by a couple from Vermont. PAWS posts valuable content along with pets for adoption through BCAS, as well as provide an avenue for direct donations. Visit the PAWS website at www.pawsofbentoncotn.org or the group’s Facebook page at PAWS-of-Benton-Co-TN.
PAWS is looking forward to holding a membership meeting soon to discuss our plans for 2023. The group will continue to work closely with BCAS to provide support for medical needs and supplies. Because PAWS is not a rescue group, it is ineligible for many grants aimed to assist in those areas, so it must rely on the generosity of others to provide financial assistance to BCAS.
The board members of PAWS offer a sincere thanks to all who donated, volunteered, or otherwise helped PAWS have such a great first year in 2022. With you help, PAWS looks forward to accomplishing even more in 2023!
For more information about PAWS, contact CEO Gail Humphrey at 731-441-1359 or [email protected].