Animal shelter’s plea for A/C answered by strangers

Fairfield Animal Shelter Director Bob Innes and Animal Control Officer Joanne Shaw receive the first two of six air conditioning units donated by a rescue organization and other donors to bring relief from extreme heat in the shelter’s overcrowded conditions. | photos: Samira Yaghi

WINNSBORO – County Councilman Douglas Pauley pleaded with Council Chairman Moses Bell to use a portion of some new-found funds in the county’s budget to provide a way to cool the animals at the over-crowded Fairfield Animal Shelter during the recent extreme heat.

While that help has not yet been extended, shelter volunteer Samira Yaghi posted an urgent plea on the shelter’s Facebook page for help in cooling the shelter animals, and the cavalry arrived within 24 hours.

A rescue organization in Charlotte spotted the post and launched a fundraiser for cooling supplies for the outside dogs and air conditioning units for the inside dogs. The organization donated the first unit. Others friends of the shelter followed with more donations.

On Tuesday of last week, the first two of six units were delivered and installed, giving the animals in the shelter their first relief from the stifling heat in weeks. Four other units arrived shortly after that.

Founders and team members of the rescue organization Forgotten, Now Family have also helped by recruiting people to foster some of the county’s shelter dogs.

“The rescue community came together in such compassionate and caring ways amidst a crisis faced in the animal welfare world right now,” Yaghi posted.

“There are no Thank You’s that will ever be enough to express our gratitude for such kindness and generosity, leaving many at the shelter in happy tears over how quickly this unfolded.” Yaghi wrote. “It was an outpouring of love and support from their family of followers and our family of followers!”

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