‘Over the moon’

South­west Coast SPCA to start new shel­ter in spring

The Western Star - - FRONT PAGE - BY FRANK GALE

Diane Si­mon says she’s “over the moon” with the thought the South­west Coast SPCA she is pres­i­dent of will be break­ing ground this spring for the con­struc­tion of a new an­i­mal shel­ter.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion had hoped to build the per­ma­nent shel­ter last year after it be­came a reg­is­tered char­ity but that didn’t oc­cur.

Now bol­stered by a grant from the Town of Stephenville of $50,000 this year and an­other grant of the same amount promised for 2020, along with more than $102,000 a sub-com­mit­tee has in a build­ing fund, a spring start is an­tic­i­pated.

Si­mon said they have been sav­ing for the con­struc­tion of the new shel­ter since a fire in March of 2015, where more than 20 of their cats per­ished.

Since that time, they had a tem­po­rary shel­ter on Churchill Street in Stephenville and the one they are cur­rently op­er­at­ing out of at 49 Main Street in Stephenville.

Si­mon said be­tween their build­ing fund, the con­tri­bu­tion from the town and a loan they were able to se­cure, they should be able to get the new shel­ter up. It’s be­lieved the cost will be about $300,000, so there’s more fundrais­ing to do.

The sub-com­mit­tee will be reach­ing out to con­trac­tors and build­ing sup­pli­ers to help with try­ing to keep the costs down.

Si­mon said the lo­ca­tion of the build­ing is right next to the cur­rent an­i­mal pound lo­cated be­hind the Stephenville town hall and that build­ing will be used for stor­age.

She said it will fit in quite well with the cur­rent build­ing.

Si­mon said this is go­ing to be a big ven­ture for their or­ga­ni­za­tion and they will need con­tin­ued com­mu­nity sup­port be­cause even after they get the build­ing up they will still have costs as­so­ci­ated with util­ity bills, ve­teri­nary bills, clean­ing and of­fice sup­plies.

She said they are ex­pected a seven- to eight-month con­struc­tion pe­riod for the new build­ing, which she said would be ideal. A pos­i­tive once they get in their own build­ing is that they won’t have a rent bill.

Si­mon said Lau­rie Flynn, a lo­cal ar­chi­tec­tural drafter, has been very gen­er­ous in pro­vid­ing her time to do up the draw­ings for the build­ing at no cost to their or­ga­ni­za­tion. She said the de­sign was done in con­junc­tion with vet­eri­nar­ian Dr. Les­lie Jean Mc­Gre­gor of the West Coast Ve­teri­nary Clinic.

The 1,972-square-foot build­ing will have of­fice space, along with six sep­a­rate rooms for an­i­mals and a sep­a­rate quar­an­tine in­take area for an­i­mals.

Coun. Mark Felix, chair of the town’s fi­nance com­mit­tee, said the town coun­cil was proud to sup­port this or­ga­ni­za­tion and that it was a good in­vest­ment to have this fa­cil­ity in the town.

Si­mon said the area they ser­vice in­cludes all Bay St. Ge­orge, Ge­orge’s Lake to Port aux Basques and along the coast to Fran­cois and hopes peo­ple in the com­mu­ni­ties will help.

She said do­na­tions can be made through email trans­fers to swc­[email protected]­mail.com or through Canada Post to the mail­ing ad­dress P.O. Box 81, Stephenville, NL A2N 2Y7.


Lau­rie Flynn, left, ar­chi­tec­tural drafter, and Diane Si­mon, pres­i­dent of the South­west Coast SPCA, pose for a photo near the lo­ca­tion of a new an­i­mal shel­ter ex­pected to start this spring.


An artist ren­der­ing done by Lau­rie Flynn, an ar­chi­tec­tural drafter, of the new South­west Coast SPCA new an­i­mal shel­ter ex­pected to start this spring in Stephenville is seen here.

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