NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced that 56,379 pets were adopted or reunited with their owners during the 2013 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, a three-month competition in which 49 animal shelters from across the country worked to increase adoptions in order to win a piece of the $600,000 in prize grants, including a grand prize of $100,000.
“I’m in awe of the hard work and determination of these shelters,” said ASPCA President & CEO Matt Bershadker. “Every life saved is an important win for these communities, and I hope their success inspires others to say ‘if they can do it, so can we.’”
During the months of June, July and August 2013, 49 shelter contestants worked to save over 12,000 more animals than they did over the same three-month period in 2012. In addition to saving more lives this summer, competing shelters realized an important gain in support from their communities, including a 45 percent increase in volunteers and a 20 percent increase in foster homes.
The ASPCA and Rachael Ray today awarded grant prizes to 12 shelters, including:
- $100K Grand Prize and Best in Division Five: The Animal Foundation in Las Vegas, Nev.
- $25K Best in Division Four: Citizens for Animal Protection in Houston, Texas
- $25K Best in Division Three: HALO Animal Rescue in Phoenix, Ariz.
- $25K Best in Division Two: Texas Humane Heroes in Leander, Texas
- $25K Best in Division One: Washington Animal Rescue League in Washington, D.C.
- $25K Community Engagement Award: Canyon County Animal Shelter in Caldwell, Idaho
In total, $600,000 in grant funding is awarded to shelter contestants in the competition for increases in animal lives saved, as well as a photo contest and general participation.
All her life, Rachael Ray has been an advocate for animals and a supporter of animal welfare groups. Her love for animals and for her pit bull, Isaboo, inspired her to create a pet food called Nutrish® to raise money for animals in need. Ray donates her proceeds from the sale of Nutrish® to organizations like the ASPCA so they can implement programs like the $100K Challenge and support shelters and animal organizations around the country.
The ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge is a groundbreaking contest that challenges animal shelters across the country to come up with innovative ways to engage their communities and get more homeless cats and dogs into loving homes. For information about the ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, please visit www.aspca.org/100K.