Meet Animal Lifeline, our Heroes of the Month! The folks at Animal Lifeline, based in Pennsylvania, do so many different things for animals that it was difficult to decide which aspect of their work to feature. They see themselves as a “rescue to the rescuers” and, through various fundraising activities, they are able to supply many private and municipal animal rescues and shelters with food, transportation, spay and neuter assistance, grant and medication procurement, kennel equipment, and just about anything else you can think of. They operate on the principle that people working together can accomplish great change, and they and their legion of volunteers are proving the truth in that statement.

In addition to their outreach, fundraising, and an extremely innovative spay/neuter program, Animal Lifeline has spent the past year building an animal shelter in the very poor community of Clay County, West Virginia. After hearing about terrible conditions at the existing shelter, they jumped right in, getting land donated and renovating a rustic shelter from the ground up. Volunteers from the Philadelphia area supplied most of the manpower. “Our volunteers do everything they can for the community,” says Animal Lifeline founder Denise Bash, “There have been friendships made that I dare say should last a lifetime. People from home send supplies to needy families, food for volunteers, and shelter and animal care supplies. It really is amazing how much more vested people are when they know where everything is going.”

Continues Bash, “There are plenty of ‘Clay Counties’ in the United States. Places where a ‘dawg’ lives on a line, cats are in even worse shape, there is no vet in the county, people are poor, and animals are destitute. Do you leave? Do you pretend it’s not happening? We have chosen to stay. There are many people in Clay who care deeply for animals. By investing in this community and teaching them, giving them the tools they need, Internet, shelter, feed, adoption outlets, grant procurement, we are saving countless more animals then we could on our own.”