Warwick Valley Humane Society was awarded a $500,000 grant from the New York State Companion Animal Capital Fund Grant program in January, the highest award possible through the competitive grant program, the first state-funded program of it’s kind in the nation, administered by the New York State Office of Agriculture and Markets.
Additionally, the organization has raised nearly $400,000 in individual and foundation funds toward it’s capital campaign to raise $1.5 million for a new spacious and properly ventilated animal shelter.
The new facility would address years of overcrowding and inadequate infrastructure that has hampered the organization’s ability to provide shelter and supportive services to today’s standards in animal care for the hundreds of rescued dogs, cats and other animals annually for the towns of Warwick, Chester and Tuxedo including the hamlets and villages therein for a combined area of 179 square miles.
“We are extremely excited to be launching this drive aimed at securing the remaining funds necessary to build a much needed new shelter at our current location in Warwick,” said Humane Society President, Suzyn Barron. “Winning the Companion Animal Capital Fund Grant was incredible for us and recognizes the significant need we are experiencing and the daily challenges faced by our dedicated staff and volunteers in caring for our community’s unwanted, stray and neglected animal companions. We hope that our supporters and all animal lovers from the communities we serve will rally around this important initiative so that re-building the shelter will be completed in 2020.”
Originally built in 1968 as a dog shelter only, the current facility is a collection of renovations and additions built on an as needed basis. While Warwick Valley Humane Society strives to provide the most humane and nourishing care to its animal residents, it is unable to provide more than one general isolation room for new intakes and sick cats, one intake area which is the lobby, and less than ideal and limited group housing. A bathroom doubles as a temporary small dog room, a utility room serves as laundry, grooming and food preparation and the “medical” room has overflow occupied cages. The office is also a nursery.
The proposed project will enable Warwick Valley Humane Society to address and remedy all of these concerns as well as create extra isolation kennels,and a safer and more suitable working and visitor friendly environment.
“We are blessed," Barron said, "to have two creative and empathetic local architects, Christopher Collins (cjpc architect) and Kevin Malone (klm artchitect) as a team who both took the time to visit other shelters before designing such a unique and functional facility for us.”
Warwick Valley Humane Society has been managing the Warwick Animal Shelter for more than 50 years.
“A good animal shelter is as important to a community as vibrant schools, an active library, creative playgrounds, hiking, biking, walking trails, local medical facilities, and a thriving retail and hospitality district," Collins said. "The Humane Society serves our animal community as these essential services serve the human population. For many years, the Warwick Valley Humane Society has operated in a 2,600 square foot facility that underserves this vital aspect of our area.”
For more information, call (845) 986-2473 or visit wvhumane.org.