SAF (Shakespeare Animal Fund) is a volunteer organization dedicated to financially assisting low income pet owners when their pets are in need of emergency veterinary care.
We regularly get stories from those we've helped. Here we'll share just a few of them so you can see what your donations do to help pets in distress and their owners:
One weekend in early May, SAF became aware of a woman who desperately needed help with her female service dog, Roxie. After serving her human Mom faithfully, Roxie developed bone cancer in one of her legs and that leg had to be amputated to keep the cancer from spreading and eventually killing her.
But the problem was, the woman could not pay the veterinary medical bills associated with the surgery. Roxie was being kept at the veterinary clinic until her Mom could come up with at least half of the money. A man who writes a blog for dogs at the Reno Gazette Journal contacted SAF and asked if we would be recipients of donations for Roxie so that the dog could be reunited with her Mom and get to go back to her loving home. Of course we agreed!
SAF also added money from our funds to reach the required amount for Roxie’s release. Jennifer Webb, our executive director, spoke with the woman on a Friday night, took a check to the vet’s on Saturday and the very grateful and relieved woman got her beloved companion back.
Here is another example:
A family had a house fire and very sadly lost their cat and one of their dogs. Their second dog, Kylie, had severe smoke inhalation and according to Kylie’s human Mom, was “one minute away from dying.”
The family took her into the emergency clinic where she was treated and stabilized. But after that, Kylie needed more tests and treatment because smoke from fires can cause such damage to the lungs.
Unfortunately, the family had run out of money and could not afford anything more to be done for Kylie. SAF authorized enough money to cover chest x-rays which would show pneumonia, and as much as we could for more treatment. After what this family has been through, we at SAF are committed to getting Kylie back to health and offered the family whatever further assistance our funds would allow.
These happy endings and many others were made possible only through the generosity of our donors, some of whom are listed on the SAF website. We are so thankful to all the people who care enough to give of their hard-earned money, and therefore help us help pets and people in need. We invite you to become one of our “angel partners” by making a donation too!
The monthly general meeting was held on June 21, at the Brew House restaurant at 6:30 pm. The public is always invited to our meetings and we hope to see you there sometime. Here is the latest news we discussed:
We are saddened by the loss of a few key members of SAF but do understand that change is always a part of growth. We are extremely grateful for all of the time and work that our fellow animal lovers devoted to SAF, and we wish them all the best in their future endeavors.
On the flip side, we are excited to welcome two new members who are willing to assume important positions.
First, is Mindy Maulucci who will be our new Volunteer Coordinator. This position is vital to our workings since it helps ensure that all of our volunteers have a positive experience with SAF, and it helps us stay efficient with our activities. Mindy is a schoolteacher, so hopefully her experience with “wrangling” those little angels will help keep us in line too! Thanks and Blessings to you Mindy for your help.
Second, is Cindi Mitchell who will be one of our new Veterinary Liaisons. This is also a vital position, since it involves maintaining good, positive relationships with our Veterinary partners. The Liaison is someone who makes sure that the vet hospitals have the kind of experience with SAF that will make them willing to continue to work with us, and therefore keep helping pets and their people.
Cindi is a sales representative who makes the rounds in Reno, and so will be dropping by some vet clinics to make sure all is well with the vets’ experience with SAF. In the past, her cat had been injured and she found herself in the position of needing and receiving help from SAF. Being a Veterinary Liaison for us is her way of giving back to SAF. She is positive and energetic and really looking forward to this work. Thanks and Blessings to you Cindi for your help too.
Thanks to the hard work of Joseph Galata, SAF has received its first grant!!! We are blessed to be the recipient of five thousand dollars from the Robert Z. Hawkins Foundation. This money will go into the general fund for operating expenses. In the world of grants, this is a relatively small but very important beginning. A substantial grant could take us to a new level of growth where we could say “yes” to the majority of the people who call us for help. Joseph and Jennifer will continue to work on procuring more grants.
Last year, over 40,000 pets perished in house fires, primarily because firefighters and other rescue personnel did not know there were pets in the house who needed to be saved. SAF has had 10,000 pet fire safety stickers printed and we are giving them to pet owners.
The “Please Save My Pets” stickers are large and bright and indicate the number and type of pets in the household. The stickers can be placed on the outside of the home or in windows for firefighters to see. A sticker was placed into every envelope during our recent donation drive mailing, and they will be given to the public at every event we attend. SAF is giving these stickers away for free of charge. As always, if you feel moved to do so, any size donation is much appreciated.
The second meeting of our new Pet Loss Support Group was held May 21 from 7 to 9 pm at 3378 Lakeside Ct (off Moana & Lakeside). The first meeting was a tremendous success. Even reporters who were just there to get some news became very involved.
We are so thankful to be able to provide such help to those who have lost a beloved pet. This group is really affecting people in a wonderful way. Those who attended said it was a tremendous help during their grief.
You don’t have to have lost a pet to attend. Just being there to support those who need it is so very helpful to them. Tom Henkenius of Channel 2 News provided more publicity for the Group, but please do tell anyone you know who might need the Group’s help. See the Events section below for the next meeting time and place.
This past winter, Mary Burns, an SAF volunteer, found herself on crutches with a broken ankle, snowed in and with a cat that needed to get to the vet clinic ASAP. She had been asking for so much help from friends for things like grocery shopping and errands, that she didn’t want to impose any further on anyone she knew. Besides, the roads were really bad with snow and she lives up in Galena.
So she called a professional pet transportation service listed in the phone book. She was stunned to hear they didn’t drive out to where she lived.
She ended up lugging her heavy kitty, “Joey,” to the vet clinic herself. (Joey is not fat, mind you - he is just a very big boy and real solid!) Not being able to pick up his carrier made the transfer from house to car, while on crutches in the snow, quite a production!
Later when Mary was back on her feet she called SAF to become a volunteer and also offered her services as SAF’s “pet taxi” for those who really needed it. This experience had made her wonder how some elderly or disabled pet owners got their sick pets to a clinic if they had no one to drive them. Taxis are expensive and buses are difficult. So she is willing to drive someone who has no other way to get to the vet’s. The request can be made to our phone workers who take calls for SAF assistance at 775-342-7040.
We are looking for someone who could serve as Secretary for SAF. This involves attending our monthly meetings and writing up the minutes of that meeting.
Also, please ask all of your animal-loving friends to visit our website and sign up for the newsletter. This is a great way to help us grow.
In the events section below, you can learn about our upcoming annual fund-raiser. We are looking for new items or services that could be part of our raffle, which will help us to raise money.
If anyone is willing to write an article about SAF, who we are and what we do, this article would be accepted by the local pet magazine Pet Folio for publication. This would be a super way to spread the word about SAF and perhaps generate some donations.
June 1, Donation Mailing - We had an excellent turn out of volunteers on this beautiful Sunday afternoon. We met at Jennifer’s house and worked steadily labeling and stuffing over 1600 envelopes with the SAF letter of appeal, pet safety stickers and return donation envelopes. With so many helping hands we finished in record time. To all who gave up their Sunday afternoon to help, we extend sincere thanks and appreciation. These mailings are a major source of our donated funds and we couldn’t have done it without you!
June 7, Walk For Animals - Sponsored by the Humane Society and held at the Sparks Marina, this fund-raiser consisted of a 2 mile fun walk with lots of activities including music, raffle prizes, refreshments, pet photos, pet contests and prizes for the top 5 fund raising walkers. The goal was to raise $100,000 to help homeless animals. Many people stopped by our table and signed up for our newsletter. There was a great deal of interest shown in our organization. SAF gave away many “Save My Pet” stickers. And, we were able to place 2000 flyers about our fall fund-raiser, Halloween Howl, into the gift bags that were given to the people who participated in the walk.
June 14, Pet Fair - Del Webb, the senior community at Sommerset, hosted a pet fair which was sponsored by their Home Owner’s Association. SAF was represented during this fun pet-friendly event. It was another great opportunity to raise community awareness of who we are and what we do, to gather more names for our newsletter mailing list and give away more “Save My Pet” stickers.
July 5, Artown - SAF will staff a table at Wingfield Park during this Artown music event, from noon to 5 pm. Stop by and meet us, or better yet, volunteer to help staff the table.
July 9, Pet Loss Support Group - the second Wednesday of July from 6 to 8 pm, to be held at the Northwest Reno Library at 2325 Robb Dr, Reno.
July 20, Art Paws - Come join with other pet lovers to celebrate McKinley Arts & Culture Center, 925 Riverside Dr in Reno.
July 23, Monthly SAF General Meeting - We will meet as usual on a Wednesday evening at 6:30 pm at the Brew House Restaurant, located on the northeast corner of South McCarran and Kietzke Lane. These meetings are open to all and we would love to see you there. It’s a great way to become involved with SAF. We gather in the small meeting room that is to the right of the hostess desk when you enter. If the door is closed (which often is the case due to noise), please do not hesitate to come in!
July 27th is our first PetSmart Sunday!!! We need people from 12noon-2p and from 2p-4p at the South Virginia PetSmart. These appearances will generate much needed donations, new members and new volunteers for us. Come have fun meeting and greeting fellow pet lovers while helping spread the word about SAF helping pets and people in need.
August 17th - PetSmart Sunday!!! We need people from 12noon-2p and from 2p-4p at the South Virginia PetSmart. These appearances will generate much needed donations, new members and new volunteers for us. Come have fun meeting and greeting fellow pet lovers while helping spread the word about SAF helping pets and people in need.
OCTOBER 18th, 6 - 9 pm, SAF ANNUAL FUND-RAISER, a.k.a. “HALLOWEEN HOWL” - This is our largest event of the year and a major source of fund-raising for SAF. Please help us make it a success by telling everyone you know! We need help to get the word out!
This special night is going to be a one-of-a-kind COSTUME BALL FOR PEOPLE AND THEIR PETS. It will be held at the Reno Livestock Events Center, Exhibit Hall and is being coordinated by Karen Nichols. You and your pet can come in costume and enjoy the many activities including having your photo taken with your pet, a fortune teller, a pet psychic, various prizes for different categories of costumes and raffles of many wonderful prizes. There will be many vendors there that will allow you and your pet to trick-or-treat among them. Please mark your calendars and start thinking about your costumes!
Staffing Tables at Events - Come join us at our informational tables at upcoming events. This is a great way to learn all about SAF, especially if you want to help represent SAF at future appearances. Your help is important for two reasons - most everything we do, including these appearances, is aimed at raising money to be able to help more pets and people. And, we have a shallow pool of volunteers at this time so those who have been willing to staff the tables up until now have had a lot of hours to cover and could use a little relief!
PetSmart "Get the Word Out" Events - We have a regular, ongoing need for people to man tables at PetSmart. It is fun to get away from it all for a few hours, sit and chat with other people like yourself who love animals. You'll spread the word about SAF and help raise money and gather volunteers. That’s a lot of good that can be done in less time than it takes to watch a football game!
Board Members, Committee Members, Committee Chairpersons - If you have a special interest or way that you would like to help companion animals and their owners, chances are we have a need for it. The more varied the expertise of our members and partners, the more good we can do. Please contact Jennifer to get an overview of our needs.
Thanks for reading our news and we would love to hear from you!