Struggling Saint John SPCA gets $10K in donations
The SPCA in Saint John could see its doors close by this weekend if it can't raise enough money to pay its mounting bills.
That ultimatum was made to the public on Saturday. In less than two days, the group has already received more than $10,000.
Harbour Con-Fusion is a local non-profit group made up of comic book fans. When the group heard the call for help, they rallied over the weekend — gathering bottle donations and handing out buckets for people to collect money.
"I don't even have a number, a head count for it, there's been so many people in and out of here," said Margaret Cornfield, president of the group.
She says she's not surprised to see people in the city rallying to save the shelter.
"Animals don't have a voice of their own, they need somebody to speak for them. That's what's really got everybody's attention," Cornfield said.
The Saint John SPCA's budget was slashed in half by city cuts back in March.
Already, the SPCA had been dealing with a growing number of animals, mounting vet bills, and a new building with a bigger mortgage.
"We thought, people are driving by and they look at the shiny new building and they're saying, oh they must be doing so wonderful, look at the nice, new building they have, but inside we're crying," said Melody McElman, president of the shelter's board of directors.
McElman says they realized on Friday that they weren't going to be able to make their $6,500 mortgage payment. They had reached a crisis point, and without help, the shelter would have to close.
"We don't want to close, we don't want to euthanize our animals, it's essential that we're here for the community," McElman said.
McElman says the community's generosity the last few days is overwhelming.
"You should see the smiles on our staff's faces, yes, we are going to make it, there's been an insurgence. It's like a tidal wave."
McElman says the hope is to raise the $200,000 they need by Saturday to keep their doors open.