Ohio State University Students Volunteer at Furkids

Posted on Tuesday, March 8th

Students to Spend Spring Break in Atlanta, Helping Local Homeless Animals

Atlanta, Ga. (March 8, 2011) – While many college students spend their spring breaks sunbathing and partying around the clock, a team of students from Ohio State University (http://www.osu.edu) will be using their five-day break to serve some of Atlanta’s homeless animals.  These Ohio State students are investing in Atlanta’s future as volunteers at Furkids (www.furkids.org).  Committed to combating pet overpopulation, Furkids operates the largest cage-free, no-kill shelter in the state for homeless cats.  The students will be helping Atlanta’s homeless animals from March 21 through March 25 as part of the Ohio State University Buck-I-Serve (http://ohiounion.osu.edu/get_involved/student_activity_fee/buckiserv) program.  The March 2011 Buck-I-Serve team is the fourth Ohio State University group to have chosen Furkids as a service opportunity.

The Ohio State University Students Engaged in Responsible Volunteering Team and the Ohio Union developed Buck-I-Serve to inspire student leaders to have life-long dedication to service to others and social justice activism in their current and future communities through extended hands-on service experiences in diverse places around the country and world.  The two groups work together to plan between 35 and 45 BUCK-I-SERV trips each year to different cities across the nation and the world.

The students will have a busy agenda that includes working at the Furkids shelter, cleaning cat rooms and performing overall cleaning, organization and administrative tasks; working at the Cat’s Meow Marketplace, (http://catsmeowthriftstore.wordpress.com),the Furkids flea market, 4015 Holcomb Bridge Road in Norcross, accepting and sorting merchandise for sale, staging product displays and helping the sales team; and helping plan fundraising and special events.

Pictured left:  The OSU/Furkids volunteer team in December 2010

Ohio State University second-year student Amanda Schneider, who is majoring in Environmental Education and Interpretation, spent her winter break in December 2010 as a Buck-I-Serve volunteer at Furkids.

“Furkids addresses a really important issue relevant to not only Atlanta but many places in the World.  Having been an advocate for animal rights for quite some time, I was excited to have the opportunity to work with such an incredible organization, even if only for a week,” Schneider said. “Since my volunteer experience at Furkids, I have been constantly encouraging friends, family, and acquaintances to help support the organization and to be more aware of animal abandonment and overpopulation.”

Furkids is one of the leading animal rescue organizations in Atlanta, with the mission of helping end pet overpopulation in Georgia through sterilization, high-quality adoption and by providing valuable spay/neuter services and pet care education to people in the community.   To that end, Furkids nurses and neuters all of its rescued animals, keeping them healthy and happy in its cheerful, cage-free shelter or in foster homes until it can place them into permanent homes.

In 2010, the organization was awarded with its 6th consecutive Best in America Seal of Excellence, confirming its rank as one of the top charities in America by Independent Charities of America (http://www.independentcharities.org).

Of the top six animal rescue organizations in metro Atlanta, Furkids has the lowest percentage of its budget dedicated to administrative expenses.  In addition, Furkids cares for more animals on a daily basis (more than 500) than any other organization, including the Atlanta Humane Society.   For every $1,000 Furkids accepts in donations, the organization adopts out more pets than virtually every other organization.

According to Furkids executive director Samantha Shelton, the first Buck-I-Serve volunteer group chose Furkids after a national search for a no-kill animal shelter.  “Furkids is honored to have the students at Ohio State University travel to Atlanta to support and care for our homeless animals,” Shelton said.  “It’s awe-inspiring to recognize that these young men and women are choosing to direct their spring break in a positive direction by helping Furkids bring people and animals together.  We’re grateful for their dedication and involvement in the Buck-I-Serve program.”

Furkids was founded in 2002 when then-Equifax executive assistant Samantha Shelton found a mother cat depositing three newborn kittens in her back yard.  What began simply as a quest to find shelter for four cats in a place where they wouldn’t be euthanized has grown into a nonprofit organization that today operates the largest cage-free, no-kill shelter in Georgia.