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Catskill Animal Sanctuary: Build-A-Bear Youth Humane Education Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

The money was used to greatly enhance the educational offerings we have available for youth who come to the sanctuary for a tour. During the tour, the young people meet the animals, learn about the plight of farmed animals, and understand how to help them. We purchased an outdoor TV to support the installation of a pre-tour video-viewing area. We were also able to develop some new, innovative educational exhibits.

One hands-on interactive exhibit showcases easy, animal-free clothing, cosmetic, etc. choices we can make every day and teaches youth about the suffering of animals used for many common products. Another interactive exhibit we were able to enhance teaches youth about the plight of hens in the world today. It demonstrates how many eggs they now lay each year compared to a hundred years ago and how they suffer on most farms in tightly confined indoor cages. We also developed a third interactive exhibit that showcases healthy whole foods that do not come from animals. And finally, we were able to purchase educational literature that youth can take home to read on their own and share with their families.

This grant allowed us to widen the scope of educational content available and create a more holistic experience for youth. It also allowed us to diversify the total experience to meet various learning-style preferences. With these new offerings, youth leave the sanctuary with a greater understanding of the plight of farmed animals and other species in the world and how to help them.

How many pets did this grant help?

It is difficult to quantify how many animals this grant has helped so far. The educational exhibits were just installed in August. We have observed them planting seeds of empathy and understanding which can guide youth in the choices they make and how they relate to other species.

Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

As we recently installed some of the exhibits, we do not have any specific rescued residents that this grant helped. The exhibits are intended to raise awareness, connect youth to information about the suffering of animals, and help them understand humane choices. We do know that when many families with children come to the sanctuary and experience what we have to offer, they are inspired to sponsor an animal or become a member. These donations are vital to ensuring the well-being and excellent care all of the close to 400 animals at the sanctuary. Here is a photo of Amos and Jesse, two cows who love to interact with youth when they come to visit! Thank you so much for your support!

Further Reading