Humane Society to start fund-raising project

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 14, 2005

NATCHEZ &045; With drawings in hand and dreams in mind, the Natchez-Adams Humane Society is getting ready to kick of the final phase of its new building project &045; the fundraising.

With a goal of $250,000, staff and board members plan to start the official drive on the first of May.

&uot;It’s an, everybody get out and beg session,&uot; board Secretary Linda Harper said.

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Though the animals, board members and shelter staff know it best, the need for a new building is more than apparent to anyone who steps foot inside the door, Harper said.

&uot;We’ve been there almost 30 years,&uot; she said. &uot;It’s bug infested and we are going to knock it over with a bulldozer.&uot;

The bulldozing party won’t come until after the completion of the new shelter though, something that is probably close to a year away. Harper said she’d love to hold the ground breaking in about six months.

&uot;We are hoping as soon as we get the money raised we will go to that phase, but you are never really sure,&uot; she said.

The new building, planned to be much larger than the current 700 square foot facility, will be constructed just behind the current building. The animals will stay in the old facility until construction is complete.

Harper said the building committee and board members have worked with local architect Charles Moroney, who is doing the work free of charge, to design the new space.

Changes will include a larger office/lobby space, a drop-off area for pets, a supply room, a hospital area, a quarantine room, a visiting room and a separate cat area. Currently cats and dogs are housed in the same room.

A major expense of the new facility will be kennels for the animals, Harper said. There will be space for between 150-200 animals, the current number housed at the shelter, Harper said. Because of annual funding limits, the shelter cannot plan to house more than around 200 animals.

Annually the humane society gets $5,500 from United Way, $15,000 from the city and $9,300 from the county.

Harper said the budget has risen recently to about $100,000.

&uot;It’s the Miss-Lou area that truly supports us,&uot; she said. &uot;We have wonderful people who say they want to help. It’s just time.&uot;

Fundraising will include radio and newspaper announcements and a large word-of-mouth campaign.

Anyone can donate by sending a check to AmSouth Bank in care of the Natchez-Adams Humane Society building fund, 55 Seargent S. Prentiss Drive.