We’re sending three new grants to Florida shelters to help them recover from Hurricane Irma:
Humane Society of Greater Miami: $10,000
“Our shelter is still picking up the pieces left behind by Hurricane Irma,” Senior Director of Development Ronald Stayton says. “We estimate that we suffered more than $400,000 in losses and costs associated with downtime. When we first lost power, the chiller could not handle the load and we lost air conditioning in all but one area of the shelter, and our A/C compressors blew. We had to move all animals from affected parts of the shelter and from our separate intake/quarantine building into the main shelter where the A/C was working. As a result of moving sick animals to the main building, we are currently experiencing a spread of the illnesses that were in that building, primarily upper-respiratory infection. We anticipated this and had ordered medications as a precautionary measure.”
The adoption center, which is home to 180 cats and 139 dogs, also had several leaks in its roof from the severe beating it got from the storm, and the community spay/neuter clinic also experienced roof damage and has several leaks.
SAFE Animal Shelter: $10,000
Sherry Mansfield, executive director of the Middleburg, FL, shelter, says: “We were badly flooded during Hurricane Irma and have to replace the infrastructure, including all equipment, appliances, drywall, furniture, air conditioning and ductwork, etc. We still have more than 40 cats and kittens and six dogs. We have received many donations from the community but right now we need funding to help get the shelter operational. We have much to do inside the building.”
Humane Society of Manatee County: $2,000
“Hurricane Irma destroyed two structures we highly depend on,” says Valerie Bliss, director of development at the Bradenton shelter. “One of the structures is a storage shed for all of our lawn-maintenance equipment. Sadly, first the shed was robbed the day after the hurricane, and then a very large tree branch came down and crushed it. Irma also destroyed a shed where we kept clean towels, beds and sheets for our shelter animals. Cleanliness and comfort are top priorities for the care of our shelter residents. Our shelter is at capacity, so storage is virtually nonexistent. Temporarily, volunteers are taking loads of laundry home to clean for us. The downside to this is the fact that we are dependent on them to return the clean laundry as soon as possible, coupled with the fact that our industrial machines are set up for the highest sanitary standards as set by hospitals.” Grant funds will go toward replacing the sheds.