NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Nacogdoches High School Honor Society members are leading the effort to find animals a "forever home."
It begins at the annual Clear the Shelter event at Nacogdoches Animal Services. The event starts at the perfect time.
If a person could talk to the animals, the National Honor Society members at Nacogdoches High School would be saying, "we want to clear the shelter."
"Everyone is invited," said Delmonte Thomas, the NHS National Honor Society secretary. "We have free popcorn, food, snow cones, hot dogs, chips, and games. Different things like that just to bring awareness and try to get every animal in the shelter adopted."
The annual event is held when the shelter needs space more so than any other time of the year.
"We usually have a rush in the spring just because animals are breeding, and we're getting litters of puppies and kittens that just come constantly through the doors," said Theresa Jordan, the Nacogdoches Animal Services manager.
Last year, Clear the Shelter found homes for approximately 20 animals. Organizers hope to do even better this year because they discovered they have a weakness for puppies.
Jiya Willis, the NHS National Honor Society vice president, has a therapy dog in mind for her mom.
"I want to get a puppy so she can raise it from being a little puppy to, you know, as it gets older, so that will be her companion," Williams said.
Students also collect dog food and monetary donations. which paid off last year.
"[We raised] probably six or seven hundred dollars for the shelter last year," said Ronya Dinbali, the NHS National Honor Society advisor. "And then we also entered the Altice Suddenlink competition. It's a big charity competition. Last year we won the first step which was $1,000."
The donation was used to buy a sound-proof door placed between the puppies and shelter staff. A victory came in the contest's second round that brought $2,000 for a fence around an agility course. No question, students will compete again this year.
"I found out I really want to have an impact on our community and I really want to show I'm there for animals," Willis said. "I'm there for people and I'm willing to help those in need."
It's a good lesson that benefits humans and animals alike.
Clear the Shelter is Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Nacogdoches Animal Services located at 3211 Southwest Stallings Drive. Pet food donations are always appreciated. Adoption fees are $20 to $30, depending on if the animal has been spayed or neutered.
For more information on the Clear the Shelter event, click here.