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Community steps up

Help, adoptions follow media coverage of theft

Leo, one of the cats available for adoption at Second Chance Animal Shelter in East Brookfield, looks over the shoulder of Jennifer Pendergast of Whitinsville as she holds him. David Dore. (click for larger version)
December 21, 2010
EAST BROOKFIELD — Thieves might have taken their wood, but it hasn't lessened their resolve to help animals.

Second Chance Animal Shelter Director Sheryl Blancato said she was "beyond angry" early last week when a few hundred dollars' worth of lumber and a ladder were stolen from a trailer outside the East Brookfield facility. Since then, Blancato has been overwhelmed by the response from people near and far.

"Since word of the theft has been put out, we've gotten so much help from the community," she said.

The shelter has received about $2,000 in donations and many letters of support since the incident, which Blancato said occurred Sunday, Dec. 12. Companies that have not given in the past have provided donations, and people who adopted pets from Second Chance have sent in donations.

"We even had one man come in with a jar full of dollar bills that he'd been saving up for a while," Blancato said. "Once we counted the money up, it was a little over $500."

Media coverage of the theft — which included stories in local newspapers and on Charter TV3 in Worcester and WCVB-TV (Channel 5) in Boston — had another positive impact, according to Blancato. Some of the animals featured in the television coverage either were adopted or have people interested in adopting them.

For more on this story, please see tomorrow's Southbridge Evening News.

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