PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, today announced an initial commitment of $1 million in grants to support animal welfare organizations working on the front lines to help pets and pet families in need in the areas affected by Hurricane Irma. With this commitment, the organization has pledged a combined $3 million in funding for the rescue, relief and recovery efforts following Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.
To help its nonprofit partner champion these efforts, and in response to shoppers in its stores asking for ways to help, PetSmart®, the nation’s largest pet retailer, has set up a dedicated financial donation system at checkout in all of its U.S.-based stores where shoppers can easily donate directly to pets and people impacted by natural disasters in increments of $1, $2, $5 or $10. In addition to this fundraising effort, customers may give to PetSmart Charities every day, year-round through the PIN pads at checkout registers inside all PetSmart stores to support the organization’s mission to connect pets and people in need. PetSmart Charities contributes more than 92 cents of every dollar donated directly to pets and pet families who need it most.
PetSmart Charities remains in close contact with animal welfare organizations within the affected regions to closely assess their specific needs during this crisis. The nonprofit said it recognizes that recovery efforts will take time and, as a partner to local animal welfare groups, it is committed to providing the necessary assistance and support for months to come.
“Once a natural disaster strikes, our local animal welfare partners work hard to rescue homeless or displaced pets left behind. This is just the first of many stages of emergency relief,” said David Haworth, DVM, Ph.D., president of PetSmart Charities. “Once the initial rescue stage has been completed, there is still work to be done to help those pets recover, reunite them with their pet parents, and if not, help them find loving forever homes. Because we know the recovery can take time and we want to ensure that local organizations can adequately assess the needs of local pets and pet families in need, nonprofits may apply for emergency relief funding up to six months following a natural disaster.”
Support on the Ground:
As Hurricane Irma moves through the region, local animal welfare organizations in the Southeastern U.S. and Puerto Rico will continue working to deliver immediate assistance to pets and pet families in need. PetSmart Charities has provided nearly $250,000 in grants and supplies thus far. Notably, Atlanta Humane Society has received about $35,000 in grants and pet supplies to support the organization as it prepares to take in nearly 1,000 displaced pets this week alone.
Ongoing In-Kind Donations of Pet Food and Supplies:
In addition to providing funds, and continuing to assess the funding needs going forward, PetSmart Charities is coordinating deliveries of pet food and supplies to organizations working in the trenches. Prior to Hurricane Irma, the nonprofit delivered three truckloads of pet food donated through PetSmart’s philanthropic Buy A Bag, Give A Meal* program and coordinated the delivery of 2,500 crates to be used for rescue efforts in the affected areas.
Supporting Animal Welfare Organizations on the Ground:
If you are with an animal welfare organization spearheading rescue, relief and recovery efforts for those affected by Hurricane Irma, please visit www.petsmartcharities.org/pro to apply for an emergency relief grant from PetSmart Charities.
How You Can Support PetSmart Charities’ Emergency Relief Efforts:
If you would like to support PetSmart Charities’ emergency relief efforts, like those underway in Florida, please consider making a donation at the PIN pads located at the cash registers of every PetSmart store or online at www.petsmartcharities.org/donate.
For more information on PetSmart Charities, please visit www.PetSmartCharities.org.
*Ends 12/31/17. 5 oz. dog food, 1.5 oz. cat food donated to PetSmart Charities to feed dogs and cats in need. See details at petsmart.com/giveameal. The actual number of meals donated is based on dog and cat food bags sold. The meal donation estimate is based on historic sales for similar time periods. No guaranteed amount. Rescue Bank and Feeding America will help distribute a large portion of the pet food donation in the U.S., while four large animal welfare agencies will distribute it in Canada.
About PetSmart Charities®
PetSmart Charities, Inc. is a nonprofit animal welfare organization with a mission to find lifelong, loving homes for all pets by supporting programs and thought leadership that bring people and pets together. In addition to finding homes for almost 500,000 shelter pets each year through its in-store adoption program in all PetSmart stores across the U.S. and Puerto Rico, PetSmart Charities provides funding to non-profits aligned with its mission through four key areas of grant support: Preventing Pet Homelessness; Helping Shelter Pets Thrive; Supporting the Bond Between People and Pets; and Emergency Relief and Disaster Support. Each year, millions of generous PetSmart shoppers help pets in need by donating to PetSmart Charities using the pin pads at checkout registers inside PetSmart stores. In turn, PetSmart Charities efficiently uses 92 cents of every dollar donated and has become the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, donating about $300 million to date. PetSmart Charities, a 501(c)(3) organization, has received the Four Star Rating from Charity Navigator, an independent organization that reports on the effectiveness, accountability and transparency of nonprofits, for the past 14 years in a row – placing it among the top one percent of charities rated by this organization.