A generous donation has given a much-loved animal charity a double boost.
Agricultural supplier Carr’s Billington has gifted boxes of products to help care for pets at Oak Tree Animals’ Charity in Carlisle.
The charity’s services have been needed like never before since the start of the pandemic with a surge in owners struggling to provide for their pets. Charity leaders are delighted with the donation, part of which is being used to help animals in their care and part will be sold off to raise funds.
Caroline Johnson, General Manager at Oak Tree, said: “It felt like Christmas when we opened the boxes! We received some incredible pet products including luxurious beds, fantastic enrichment toys, litter trays and harnesses.
“Keeping the animals in our care mentally stimulated during their stay is of utmost importance to us. Their welfare is our priority and we have been able to use the equipment kindly donated to help keep them active and engaged.
“To say we were delighted is an understatement. It really does mean a great deal to receive such a generous and thoughtful donation that can be put to immediate use for the animals in our care.”
Sophie Smith, Head of Product Management and Marketing at Carlisle-based Carr’s Billington, which has a network of 30 country stores, said: “We’re only too happy to help support such a valuable community asset that does such amazing work. We’re all animal lovers here and appreciate everything the charity is doing to help during these difficult times.”
Up to the end of September, the charity, based at Wetheral Shields, had helped 2,176 animals in need, through its rehoming and community programmes. This is work it could not do without community backing and the charity is keen to thank everyone who has supported it.
Caroline added: “We are perhaps needed now by animals and owners in our region more than ever before during peacetime.
“We have seen a dramatic increase in animals and pet owners needing support and we have responded by making ourselves as available as possible to our community. We have expanded our food parcel distribution and other supporter services including, neutering support and ‘A Helping Paw’ which provides temporary pet fostering to allow those experiencing homelessness or fleeing domestic violence to seek shelter.
“Unfortunately, as people in our community are facing increased hardship, we anticipate that not only will we need to increase our community support, but also that we will see demand for our rehoming services also increase as people face financial challenges.
“We have been overwhelmed by the support shown during the pandemic. Whilst cash donations have decreased significantly, the amount of online donations via both our website and Facebook have reassured us that our supporters are very much still willing to donate and help our cause.
“We ask that people please keep responding to our requests for financial support when they can – we can’t emphasise enough what a difference their continued contributions make.”
To find out more about the charity’s work in the community or how you can support them, please visit https://www.oaktreeanimals.org.uk or telephone its Community Team on (01228) 560082 ext 230.