FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
DATE: November 21, 2013 4:21:51 PM CST
BARC and Local Rescue Group Launches Colorado Animal Transport Program to Save More of Houston's Homeless Animals
HOUSTON, TX– Today, BARC Animal Shelter and Adoptions and Rescued Pets Movement (RPM) launched a brand new transport program where animals will be transferred from BARC to no-kill animal rescue groups, adopters and fosters in Colorado. There is a high demand for pets in Colorado and Houston has the supply. RPM has set a goal to transport at least 50 BARC animals per week to Colorado.
"This large-scale transfer program is something that was only a pipe dream for BARC just a few years ago," said Chris Newport, BARC spokesman. "Since our organizational transformation, we have built a strong and vast network of partners that have helped make our program what it is today. Now, our partnership with Rescued Pets Movement will take it to an entirely different level and we hope it will result in a material and significant increase in BARC's live release rate. This is a Houston solution to a problem cities across the United States are experiencing."
To celebrate the launch of the new program, RPM plans to transport 55 dogs and cats to Colorado on November 21. Since September 2013, RPM has transferred 399 animals from BARC and plans to transport numerous others over the next months and years. RPM mostly focuses on transferring highly adoptable length-of-stay animals, but also takes animals with minor skin issues and heartworm positive dogs.
"One word best describes RPM’s shelter pets transfer program: Hope," said Cindy Perini, Co-Founder of Rescue Pets Movement. "The program gives hope and a second chance to thousands of homeless pets. RPM crosses borders and boundaries to partner with rescue groups all across the U.S. that actually have a demand for homeless animals. It’s as simple as supply and demand and RPM’s transfer program is having a huge impact on the number of animals saved at BARC. Demand is growing and word is spreading about all of the wonderful dogs and cats at BARC needing to be rescued in Houston and with RPM, these homeless animals will get that second chance. It’s the best feeling in the world to watch these homeless animals walk out of the shelter and off to their new life where they are so wanted."
Growth and Future of Programs:
As BARC continues to build partnerships with non-profit organizations such as RPM and private companies such as Proler Southwest/Sims Metal Management, BARC will implement additional programs that save more lives. This transport program is one of two major new-to-Houston initiatives launched since the Summer of 2013, thanks to private donations from Houstonians and organizations alike. In addition to the transport program, the Healthy Pets, Healthy Streets spay/neuter initiative will have an impact on Houston neighborhoods and communities.
BARC's transfer and rescue program has grown exponentially since BARC's transformation in 2009. Less than 10 rescue partners worked with BARC when the transformation began. Now, about 200 rescue groups transfer animals out of BARC. In 2012, rescue groups transferred 2,902 animals out of the shelter. Since January 2013, that number has been exceeded with more than 4,100 animals transferred. BARC and RPM hopes to increase that number exponentially with the new program.
These new and innovative approaches are only the beginning of what is to come for Houston's homeless animals. With continued funding and growing support among Houstonian's, BARC can continue to save more lives. BARC hopes to continue receiving additional private donations and City funding to launch and maintain more programs that impact Houston's animals, residents, streets and communities.
Funding Support Needed:
BARC and RPM strongly encourage Houstonians to support the program to save more lives by donating to RPM at www.rescuedpetsmovement.org. BARC partner, Proler Southwest/Sims Metal Management, is supporting the new program by providing funding to transport 200 animals.
The cost to transport one animal from BARC to Colorado is $50. With a goal of transporting at least 50 animals per trip, the total cost per trip is $2,500. RPM hopes to transport animals at least once per week. The total monthly cost is expected to be at least $10,000 per month.
"We are working with RPM to raise as much funding as possible to continue and expand this effort, but we can't do it without the help of Houstonians," said Newport. "No donation is too small. Every dollar helps transport an animal out of BARC and into the home of a loving new family in Colorado. Anything from a $5 donation to sponsoring an animal's seat on the transport vehicle can completely change a life."
The simplest, but most powerful thing you can do to help BARC, and pets throughout our community, is to talk to your friends, neighbors, and family about caring for pets responsibly. Please donate to BARC online via the Houston BARC Foundation today.
Above: Tango was a BARC dog adopted by Kiersten Thoma through RPM's Colorado transport program.
"In all honesty, I just need one photo of my little guy to explain why Houston and why RPM. I believe all you really need is to witness one transport to understand why we believe so highly in the program you’ve put together. Seeing these dogs hop out of the van and into a new life really changes you and sharing just one moment with them proves that these animals recognize that their lives have been saved." - Kiersten Thoma
Above: Clyde was high Heartworm positive and was spotted through a glass window at BARC. He was transferred to Colorado and immediately found an adoptive family. He now has a wonderful life (Mt. Evans is in the background of this photo).
Christopher Newport, Public Information Officer