Portland, OR. Oregon Friends of Shelter Animals (OFOSA) is running a photo contest to raise needed funds. Now through October 30th, donors can vote for the dog or cat they’d like to see win the title of President of the Furry States. Right now, in the lead for the title of President of the Furry States, with 225 votes, it’s Pippi Longears. (Seen above.) Pippi has an ambitious platform. The three-year-old dog promises to protect you from squirrels, keep your canine in line on morning walks, and create a warm spot in bed.
(OFOSA) came up with this novel idea because like most local nonprofits, it was forced to cancel in-person benefits because of COVID-19. Anne Haynes, Director of Development, explains the decision to host a presidential fundraising event. “It has been such a strange year and we have not been able to hold any of our in-person fundraising events, so I was thinking of what might be a fun, COVID-friendly way to raise funds in a positive way. That’s how our President of the Furry States was born.”
OFOSA is a foster-based animal rescue organization whose mission is to reduce the number of adoptable animals that are euthanized in overcrowded shelters, restore them to good health, and through adoption, provide them forever loving homes.
Entry into the contest and voting is open until Oct. 30th at 11 pm. It costs ten dollars to enter your pet and five-dollar minimum to vote for your favorite. Click here to access their entry site for the photo contest.
Oregon Friends of Shelter Animals has faced challenges, like losing its in-store adoption locations with PetSmart and Petco due to COVID-19 restrictions and having to redefine the way to run business to keep everyone safe and still find homes for the animals.
Despite complications due to COVID-19 for OFOSA, the organization had 100 new foster sign-ups since people were staying home more than ever. By the end of September, they had already surpassed the intake numbers for the whole year of 2019.
The organization has seen more serious medical cases this year and have been able to take most of those animals in. These animals are most likely to be euthanized because shelters are lacking the funds right now to repair broken limbs, fix bad teeth, and/or remove ruptured eyes.
In times of living with COVID-19, Haynes and the rest at OFOSA feels a huge benefit of their mission is that pets show their unconditional love for their owners and they know the word could use much more of that.
According to Haynes, “owning an animal has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety, improve heart health, keep your company, help you make friends, teach kids responsibility, and improve your immune system. With all of the changes we’ve had to go through this year with COVID and the stress of the ‘real people’ election, we wanted to remind people of the love of animals.”
Since the beginning, in 2002, the organization has rescued over 19, 200 cats and dogs.
From Oregon Friends of Shelter Animals website: Our team is comprised of 5 dedicated animal lovers, a volunteer Board of Directors who provides strategic guidance for OFOSA, and hundreds of volunteers who contribute their time and talent to virtually every aspect of our operation. Without these volunteers, we would not be able to fulfill our mission.