By JAMIE PAWLICK
The holiday season is in full swing, but there's still time to get the perfect gift for the special pet-owner or animal-lover on your list - and students at Lycoming College are helping a local animal rescue organization meet its goals for the holiday season.
Lycoming College students recently worked with the Lycoming County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals to help aid in fundraising. Front row, from left, are Justine Bush, Kari Lenz, Justine Milan, Megan Keck and Stephanie Reid; and back row, Victoria Stryker, executive director of the SPCA, and students Stephanie Van Der Wal, Roger Jayne, Mike Tucker, Tyler Floyd, Brad Stevens, Tom Robinson and Brice Rickard.
Students in Dr. Neil Boyd's business class formed the company Top Notch Consulting group to help the Lycoming County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
The SPCA is dedicated to protecting domestic animals by providing shelter and medical treatment, running investigations on cruelty and abuse complaints, and providing adoption and education services to ensure the animals find their ways into good hands, according to Victoria Stryker, SPCA executive director.
The proceeds and donations that the organization receives from the holiday kiosk at the Lycoming Mall, as well as other year-round fundraising events, are essential for supplying adequate food, housing and medical care for the animals, she said.
"Sixty percent of our income is through fundraising," Stryker said. "We could not care for over 4,000 animals without public donations."
Fortunately, there are caring people, businesses and schools that are willing to put forth great efforts to help support these injured and homeless pets.
In early December, the business students ran a "Pet Pictures with Santa" event, which raised more than $800 for the SPCA.
"My favorite part of the project was growing as a team and knowing that the funds we raised would go directly to the SPCA," said Lycoming student Kari Lenz, who acted as the communications specialist for the project. "While working during the event, we grew attached to the animals at the shelter. We really wanted to make a difference in their lives. The amount that we raised will go a long way."
Still on the schedule in the lineup of holiday fundraisers is a "Pay the Bills Holiday Raffle," which will be held at 3 p.m. Monday, Dec. 27, at the SPCA shelter, 2805 Reach Road.
Tickets are on sale at the shelter and are $2 each or three for $5, with three cash prizes available.
For more information about adoption services and upcoming fundraisers, visit www.lycomingspca.org.
"Every contribution will aid the SPCA in providing dogs, cats and other domestic animals with a healthy, happy holiday season," Stryker said.
Pawlick may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.