PERU - Things are beginning to look up for Elmore SPCA, the organization which provides welfare services to animals from throughout the North Country.
According to the most recent edition of Elmore News, the seasonal newsletter printed by the nonprofit organization, the past year has seen a dramatic outpouring of support from people across the North Country. Last October, the animal shelter was facing potential closure due to operating at a substantial loss, which was attributed to fewer donations and increased costs in day-to-day expenses.
Carol M. Solari-Ruscoe, secretary of the Elmore SPCA board of directors, said as the organization nears the end of its fiscal year, the shelter is "on a better financial footing than this time last year."
"As soon as people were aware of our financial situation earlier this year, they stepped up from all walks of life to try to help; adults and children alike," said Solari-Ruscoe. "Based on the encouraging responses from people, it is very clear that they want to see the Elmore SPCA remain open."
Easter basket raffles, perennial plant sales, bake sales, school fundraisers and even Girl Scout food drives are among the fundraisers held to benefit the shelter, said Solari-Ruscoe.
"It has been so amazing," she said. "Everything raised has helped to keep our shelter open for all the animals depending on us to give them a second chance."
Though Elmore SPCA is seeing progress, the shelter's financial troubles are far from over, Solari-Ruscoe said.
"We are still struggling financially as it costs approximately $12,000 a month to keep the shelter open," she said. "This is a huge challenge for a rural shelter to meet every single month, especially in difficult economic times."
Regardless of the financial climate, Elmore SPCA needs to pay for insurances and utilities while providing shelter and proper care for homeless animals and maintaining sufficient staff to do so, said Solari-Ruscoe.
Events such as the recent Flaming Leaves Auction Night held at American Legion Post 20 in Plattsburgh - which raised more than $3,000 - are key to helping the shelter, which also relies heavily on donations.
"Quite literally, the only way we will stay open is through strong and sustained support by the community," she said.
Those interested in making a donation to the shelter may send contributions in care of Elmore SPCA to 510 Arthur Road, Peru N.Y. 12972. For more information, call the shelter at 643-2451 or visit their Web site, www.elmorespca.org.