NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced that Humane Society of Charlotte in Charlotte, N.C. is at the top of the leaderboard in the Southeast Region of the 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, as 366 pets were adopted or reunited with their owners during the first 30 days of the three-month competition, an increase of 193 lives saved over the same month last year. Through October, 50 animal shelters from across the country will work to increase adoptions in order to win a piece of the more than $500,000 in ASPCA prize grants, including a grand prize of $100,000.
During the first month of the contest, many shelters tried out new methods of driving traffic to their adoption centers – many held big adoption events, unique promotions and discounts on adoption fees, and more.
“When asked to describe themselves in three words, Humane Society of Charlotte chose ‘small but mighty,’ and they have proven it in spades by finding homes for 366 animals in just the first month,” said Bert Troughton, vice president of community outreach for the ASPCA. “They took advantage of the upcoming presidential election and its ties to the city of Charlotte, holding a “Meet the Candidates” adoption event and finding homes for over 100 pets in just the first week – and they’ve continued with more creative adoption promotions and events since that first week.”
In addition to Humane Society of Charlotte, contestants in the Southeast Region for the 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge are:
- Central Brevard Humane Society in Cocoa, Fla.
- Broward County Animal Care and Adoption Center in Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
- Flagler Humane Society in Palm Coast, Fla.
- Seminole County Animal Services in Sanford, Fla.
- Big Dog Ranch Rescue in Wellington, Fla.
- Oconee County Humane Society, Inc. in Seneca, S.C.
- Young-Williams Animal Center in Knoxville, Tenn.
- Portsmouth Humane Society in Portsmouth, Va.
The contestants will work to save at least 300 more cats and dogs during the months of August, September and October 2012 than they did during the same period in 2011. The ASPCA and Rachael Ray will award a $100,000 grand prize to the shelter contestant that achieves the greatest increase in lives saved during this three-month period. A second place prize of $25,000 will be awarded to the shelter with the second greatest increase in lives saved, and the contestant that does the best job of engaging its community members in helping to save more animals will win $25,000. Those organizations that do the best in their liisions will be eligible for between $5,000 and $40,000 in additional grants.
All her life, Rachael Ray has been an advocate for animals and a supporter of animal welfare groups. Her love for animals and for her pit bull, Isaboo, inspired her to create a pet food called Nutrish® to raise money for animals in need. Ray donates 100 percent of the proceeds from the sale of Nutrish® to organizations like the ASPCA so they can implement programs like the $100K Challenge and support shelters and animal organizations around the country.
To find a contestant near you, please visit http://challenge.aspcapro.org/contestants. To see a complete list of events as they are scheduled, please stay tuned to http://challenge.aspcapro.org/events throughout the contest. The ASPCA also has joined the contestants and all of their supporters in tweeting with the unique hashtag #100KChallenge. The ASPCA encourages animal lovers to use #100KChallenge on Facebook and Twitter to help spread the word about adopting animals from shelters in the contest.
The ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge is a groundbreaking contest that challenges animal shelters across the country to come up with innovative ways to engage their communities and get more homeless cats and dogs into loving homes. For more information about the 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, please visit www.aspca.org/100kchallenge.