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FoCCAS celebrates volunteers at annual banquet

Friends of the Colleton County Animal Shelter (FoCCAS) recently celebrated their volunteers at their annual volunteer and supporter appreciation dinner. The event was held at the Colleton County Farmers Market on Memorial Avenue. The event was catered by Todd Cummins and Mary Foster of Farm Little Food Service and sponsored by the Going to the Dogs Band. After everyone’s plates were packed with rice pilaf, green beans and macaroni and cheese the program began.

Mayor Bill Young delivered a big thank you to the group of volunteers on behalf of the City of Walterboro. County Councilman Gene Whetsell also expressed gratitude on behalf of those on County Council for all of the hard work FoCCAS does to support the Colleton County Animal Shelter and the animals of Colleton County. Councilman Whetsell told how his relationship with Reggie McNeil, Director of Colleton County Animal and Environmental Control, first began. Many years ago, Whetsell coached McNeil in Little League baseball. Whetsell went on to say how glad he was the two are playing on the same team again in wanting to help the animals.

Laura Clark, Colleton County Shelter Manager, welcomed the group and was surprised when Sarah Miller called her back to the front of the room. Miller, Vice-President of FoCCAS, told the group of all the work Clark had done over the past year for the cats of Colleton County. Clark has used various outlets to get cats out of the shelter. She has sent some up north for rescue and some have gone to Pounce Cafe in Charleston. She has started a barn cat program and was instrumental in the Colleton community cats program, a program which traps, fixes and returns feral cats to their “home” on the streets. Clark was presented a piece of art that showed cats rowing a canoe. Miller said the award is for Clark, the staff at the shelter and the volunteers that all helped in improving the lives of the cats in Colleton and that is Clark to put cats in a canoe to get them to rescue she would do that too.

The volunteer organization was very pleased to show off the ever improving numbers for the shelter. “Because of the increase of animals being adopted and going to rescue, FoCCAS has been able to supplement the county budget to pay for additional surgeries, vaccines and microchips by $40,000. Included in that amount was a $10,000 grant received by the organization that implemented “vaccinations on intake” to help keep animals healthy at the shelter,” said Miller

The group recognized several volunteers by giving them some awards. The awards given were “The All Around Award” to Elena Strauman, “I Can Do That Award” to Barbara Burgess, “Herding Cats Award” to Jodie Mullen, “In and Out, Out and In Award” to Donna and Charlie Lamb, “Critter Courier Award” to Kaye Thomas-Gatch and “Every Day of the Year Award” to Terry O’Quinn. “As you can see since FoCCAS first began in 2009 the number of volunteers have grown beyond belief. Folks all over the county are helping to save the animals,” said Miller on the number of volunteers that help the nonprofit group out. For more information on how you can help, visit their website at www.focca-sc.org.

Christie Slocum (494 Posts)