January 6, 2021

SUNY Empire State College to Hold Statewide Pet Drives to Benefit Animal Shelters

Contactless Drives Scheduled in Rochester, Saratoga Springs, and Selden on January 13 Beginning at 11 a.m.

Suggested Donation Items Include Food, Toys, Leashes, and Beds


(SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – January 6, 2021) SUNY Empire State College will hold three concurrent pet supply drives in Rochester, Saratoga Springs, and Selden to benefit area shelters in need.

While some animal rescues and shelters across the country have experienced an increase in pet adoptions, many people have made the difficult decision to surrender their pets due to COVID-19-related financial hardships and evictions. The pandemic has also led to fewer donations from individuals and businesses, which animal welfare organizations rely on to offset the costs of food, medication, medical procedures, and on-site food pantries for community pets.

On January 13, between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., volunteers at the three locations will accept new, unwrapped items for pets, including food, toys, leashes, medications, and beds. Donors are asked to simply drive up, and a volunteer — masked and adhering to social distancing guidelines — will collect gifts, while the driver remains in their vehicle. Donations made at the following SUNY Empire locations will benefit the respective organizations:

“The pandemic has affected so many and as more experience financial difficulties, they are not only struggling to care for themselves and their loved ones, but also the furry members of their families,” said SUNY Empire State College Officer in Charge Nathan Gonyea. “SUNY Empire is proud to partner with Mohawk Hudson Humane Society, the Greece Residents Assisting Stray Pets, and the North Fork Country Kids Program. Their efforts to care for these animals is commendable.”

Next week’s pet supply collection follows the success of SUNY Empire’s recent food and toy drives. Both events collected thousands of items, all of which were distributed to families and children in New York state throughout the holiday season. 

About Mohawk Hudson Human Society  

A history of growth and advancement, with compassion at the core.

Founded in 1887, the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society (MHHS) is the oldest and largest animal protection organization in New York's Capital Region, serving Albany, Rensselaer and surrounding counties. In addition to providing shelter and care for stray, abused and unwanted animals, we provide an ever-increasing array of services for animals and those who care for them. These programs contributed to a 95.2% live release rate in 2019. This includes low-cost spay/neuter and wellness services, vaccination and microchip clinics, stray housing for municipalities, dog training, a pet food pantry and humane education programming for all ages.

About Greece Residents Assisting Stray Pets 

GRASP is committed to reducing the number of homeless pets in Greece, New York by decreasing dog and cat reproduction, promoting responsible pet ownership, and placing homeless dogs and cats into compatible, loving, permanent homes. GRASP envisions a day when every dog and cat will live in a loving, safe, healthy home environment and will be cared for responsibly and humanely. 

For more information visit https://www.graspinc.org/our-mission.

About North Fork Country Kids Program  

We are a volunteer-based organization made up of educators and students that have come together to Trap, Neuter, and Return (TNR) and advocate for abandoned, stray and feral cats. We also promote and provide education about community cats, reducing feral population, and land preservation on the North Fork of Long Island. Learn more at https://www.northforkcountrykids.org/

About SUNY Empire State College  

SUNY Empire State College educates 16,000 students per year in person, online, and through a blend of both, at locations in every region of New York and at eight international sites worldwide. Together with one of SUNY Empire’s 800 faculty mentors, each student designs their own individualized pathway to a college degree that accommodates their schedule and awards credit for prior college-level learning. SUNY Empire awards more than 3,000 degrees annually and 94 percent of graduates stay in New York state. Today, more than 89,000 SUNY Empire alumni are entrepreneurs, veterans, and active members of the military, professional athletes, teachers, medical professionals, and leaders in their field, as well as in their communities. To learn more, visit www.esc.edu and follow the college on social media @SUNYEmpire. 

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