Even our smallest of alum find their ways of giving back to our community. Jodie the bunny, FOMTAS social media specialist Hannah Stampleman's bunny and shelter alum, has been hard at work these past few months. She's been making poo for the Montclair Community Farms! Unlike some of the other shelter residents, Jodie's poo is perfect for feeding garden soil as it doesn't even need to be composted! Simply add to the garden and watch it grow! Jodie prefers to see it as a full circle effort as she enjoys eating many herbs, greens and berries from her urban balcony garden in Jersey City.
Montclair Community Farms, run by farm director Lana Mustafa, was formed in 2011 as a program to offer youth the opportunity to grow and sell vegetables. Their mission has been to increase access to affordable fresh produce in local neighborhoods in addition to serving as a hands-on resource that engages and educates. Since 2011, MCF has grown over 3,300 pounds of organic produce that has been sold to seniors at affordable prices or donated to the community.
Two months ago alum Blanco came to Montclair Township Animal Shelter. Plucked from a Paterson kill shelter, Blanco's eyes told a story of having more to give than his current situation allowed. "I always need to see their eyes... it's kind of an old school initial evaluation. You can get the feel for how invested they are to be with humans" says shelter director Liz Morgan. "I'm so proud of Blanco! We got a call from [Specialty K9 Search and Recovery] looking for a 'working GSD' asked them to come meet him." Blanco, now Sparky, is in training for his new life and this time he's the one doing the saving! Sparky, pictured with owner and handler Robert Langendoen, started out strong on his first day of training getting to know the team and learning fun training games. While this is a very happy ending for the shelter's time with Sparky, it's only the beginning of his incredible new journey! Congratulations, Sparky and Robert!
SK9SAR is a non-profit 501c3 organization dedicated to providing professionally trained and certified K9/Handler resources for search, rescue and recovery, at no cost. They respond only at the authority of law enforcement or affiliate agency. For more information on their mission and accomplishments, visit their website at http://specialtyk9sar.org