We did it! Or better yet, YOU did it! This community has raised just over $5.1 million towards our new building! The Lynchburg Humane Society received a very generous donation of $250,000 from Liberty University putting us over our original goal of $4.8 million. As a result our Main Street in the adoption lobby will be named after Liberty University. We are excited and grateful to have them a part of this community project especially since a large number of our volunteers during the school year are Liberty students.
But we aren’t done yet! We have enjoyed one of the best capital campaigns in Lynchburg, as a direct result of the leadership of Rosemary and George Dawson and consultant Skip Kuhn and of course the hard work of an amazing committee of dedicated board and community leaders who worked tirelessly to make it happen. Unfortunatly, material and labor costs have gone up since we did our orginal projection of $5.6 million, creating a small gap to make up. With many attractive naming opportunities for dog living rooms, visitation rooms, dog kennels and cat condos there is still time to help make a difference and donate towards this amazing project. Every donation of $1,000 and above will see their name on our Donor Wall located in the main lobby. We will close our capital campaign on September 1, 2014 in order to have the signs ordered and completed by our opening date.
On top of just looking to close the gap between increased costs and money raised, we have a new campaign that was presented by Becky Hawkins to give the dogs outside play areas, which we had not originally planned for. The Hawkins Challenge is a dollar for dollar match with a fundraising goal of $25,000 to fund some nice outside excercise facility which are vital to our mission and the stress reduction and mental health of dogs in our facility. We have seen dogs scared of other dogs come out of their shell and learn how to communicate through large play groups. Studies show that “play” is vital to help relieve the stress of living in a shelter environment and gives them the much needed socialization every dog enjoys. We still have $18,500 to raise in this new challenge. If you would like to make a donation to this project please send your check in to 3305 Naval Reserve Road; Lynchburg, VA 24501 and write Hawkins Challenge on the memo line.
So the big question is when? When will it be completed and when will it be open? There is no one more excited besides the staff and board than the project workers and managers of Jamerson-Lewis Construction to get this project completed. We hope to have it completed by the end of the year and with some grand opening festivities happening in the beginning of 2015. It all seems like a dream and I can’t tell you how much I have learned through this whole process. The Board decided many years ago that we had to do this building even when others said it couldn’t be done. We had no choice and thankfully this community saw the need and our vision to help make this happen for all the pets in need in our community.