This article was written by Ellen Andre and originally appeared on InsideLowell.com.
So far this column has visited non-profits who support veterans, military, those struggling with food insecurity, young girls needing a healthy learning environment, children needing support with reading and learning, women struggling with substance use, kindness provided to elders and others with flowers, healthy environment for families to enjoy lifelong benefits and much more.
And now for something completely different we highlight the Lowell Humane Society.
Executive Director Crystal Arnott explains their mission …which is to provide shelter, prevent cruelty to animals and advocate for their welfare with the goal of improving the quality of life for animals and people.
What an incredible history, they have been serving the community and pets for 150 years!!
LHS is extremely proud of their responsiveness to the community’s needs, their legacy of law enforcement and adapting their programs as the field changes-moving from the days as animal inspectors in the 1800’s, to law enforcement and now working on a more social services level, to help keep families and their pets together.
Lowell Humane Society connects pet owners with resources to help them keep their pets where they belong-out of the shelter and at home! They assist families looking to add pets to their families by guiding them to the right fit for them, creating a legacy of animal welfare minded individuals.
It doesn’t stop there though. They are hoping to expand their services to offer low cost veterinary services and behavior/training assistance to our community with a new facility.
Crystal explains some of their biggest challenges today are space and their very old facility! As programming expands and changes, the current facility is just not holding up to their aspirations. They are beginning to look at renovations or even a new build that needs to happen. Another major concern is their budget!! The cost of keeping the building open and running is increasing. Medical care costs are rising-many of the shelter animals need lab work and treatment to get chronic diseases under control, as they often go untreated for quite some time before coming in the care at LHS.
They are also committed to paying the staff a livable wage; as a nonprofit organization there’s a bit of an old-fashioned mindset that one should just be happy being paid less because you choose to work at a nonprofit-but they believe the staff deserves to be compensated for their commitment to a stressful nonprofit work! They cannot provide the proper care to the pets who need them without skilled employees to cater to the medical and behavioral needs of these homeless pets.
We asked Crystal how the community can help. She said one word- ADOPT! She asked we spread the word about LHS whether it is to recommend an adoptable pet or send someone their way to become a volunteer or foster home-or join them yourself!! DONATE! Join their monthly giving program, run a wish list drive in your office or school or just toss an extra bag of kitty litter or bag of cat food in your cart for them when you’re at the grocery store each week. Ask your employer if they have a matching gift program and ask them to match your donation or bring items from their wish list. Your company can also partner for an in service day for employee bonding, sponsor an event or get involved by holding a drive. There are just so many ways to get involved.
People can learn more at: www.lowellhumanesociety.org or stop in, they’re open 6 days a week Tues.-Sunday, 12-4.