Rhode Island Foundation Awards Nearly $500,000 in Grants for Animal Welfare

 Rhode Island Foundation Awards Nearly $500,000 in Grants for Animal Welfare

Will fund everything from free, statewide spay/neuter for needy pet owners to re-opening the seal pool at the Roger Williams Park Zoo.


PROVIDENCE,RI – The Rhode Island Foundation announced today that it has awarded nearly $500,000 in grants to fund 28 animal welfare programs across the state ranging from underwriting a free statewide spay and neuter services for the pets of needy Rhode Islanders to re-opening the seal pool at the Roger Williams Park Zoo.


“The generous support of our donors and the dedication of our partners are expanding humane education, raising awareness and increasing the quality of animal care in Rhode Island,” said Adrian Bonéy, the Foundation’s grant programs officer who oversees the Program for Animal Welfare (PAW). “Their efforts are leading to new approaches to animal welfare and humane education across the state.”


PAW funds organizations that promote and provide humane treatment of animals or work more generally on the welfare of animals. Grants are for projects or programs that have a positive impact statewide or in individual communities with regard to animal care, education about the humane treatment of animals and animal welfare in general.


“Animal welfare grants actually reach much further than is obvious. For instance, a grant to help emergency pet sheltering saves human lives because people will heed evacuation warnings if they have somewhere to take their pets, where they would not if they had to leave their pets in harm’s way,” said State Veterinarian Dr. Scott Marshall.


The largest award was made to the Ocean State Animal Coalition of Warwick (OCSC), which received $78,500, primarily to offer needy pet owners statewide free or low-cost transportation and spay and neuter services for their dogs and cats.


“Our van drives all over Rhode Island, ensuring that animals in the care of shelters and rescue organizations, as well as pets whose owners could not otherwise get to us, can have the surgery they need. We could not continue to offer affordable and accessible transport and surgical services without this support,” said Liz Skrobisch, OSAC’s executive director.


Other major grants included $25,000 to the Rhode Island Zoological Society to re-open the seal pool at the Roger Williams Park Zoo, $35,000 to the Robert Potter League for Animals in Middletow for a public education campaign called CoyoteSmarts and $5,000 to enable the Westerly Animal Shelter to  implant a microchip ID in every shelter animal prior to adoption.


PAW is funded with assistance from the Virginia B. Butler Fund, Abbie A. Brougham Memorial Fund, Ginger, Sheba and Susie Carr Fund, Chariho Westerly Animal Rescue League Animal Welfare Fund, Mary Lou Crandall Fund, Anne Grosvenor Fund, Jeanne Marie Mehmed Fund, Vernon and Mary Pierce Fund, Helen Walker Raleigh Animal Fund, Ilon Sillmon/Sara Andrews Endowment Fund, Vinny Animal Welfare Fund and Dawn, Gregg and Leland Weingeroff Animal Fund.


The Rhode Island Foundation is the largest and most comprehensive funder of nonprofit organizations in Rhode Island.  In 2014, the Foundation awarded $34.8 million in grants to organizations addressing the state’s most pressing issues and needs of diverse communities. Through leadership, fundraising and grantmaking activities, often in partnership with individuals and organizations, the Foundation is helping Rhode Island reach its true potential. For more information, visit www.rifoundation.org.