Pets in Need Club encourages students to support animal welfare

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Kyra Lu

A club member embroiders a piece of fabric. “We’re making pillows and various other things for the animals in the shelter,” said freshman Madeline Howard.

Every year, almost 6.3 million pets enter the United States’ animal shelter systems. Of those 6.3 million, approximately 4.1 million get adopted into loving homes.

Dedicated shelters like Pets in Need and the Peninsula Humane Society & Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) prioritize animal welfare and support many animal species, including mammals and reptiles. They strive to find homes for these animals and ensure that they receive proper care.

At Carlmont, a club dedicated itself to the Pets in Need organization. Despite encountering many challenges, they have recently initiated projects that help contribute and donate to the shelter. 

“Originally, I was an ambassador with the organization,” said Avery Chang-Linenberg, the president and founder of the club. “I had wondered if it would be helpful to have a group at Carlmont that could provide more outreach and spread more awareness.”

Since the club was formed this school year, they have encountered problems with organizing and finding activities. 

“We had a very rough start,” Chang-Linenberg said. “We spent a lot of meetings brainstorming what to do and ended up not doing it.”

Pets in Need provides care for many animals. (Kyra Lu)

There was little contact with the animals, as planning was hard for the club and the organization. According to Chang-Linenberg, there were multiple restrictions regarding volunteering at the shelter, including going through a process with the volunteer committee and age requirements.

“We have had things in the past, like Doggie Day Out, which the shelter invited us to do, but it got canceled three times,” Chang-Linenberg said. 

Regardless of these struggles, they recently found a project that would engage the club and help the animals in the shelter. 

“We are sewing blankets, toys, pillows, and bandanas for the animals,” said sophomore Darcy Pelham, a club member. 

Everyone provides their own materials, using items such as old shirts and sewing supplies. 

“We don’t have a lot of supplies for fabric, but we are making the most of what we have,” said freshman Madeline Howard.

Despite only recently starting a project, members joined the club to interact with other animal lovers and promote animal protection. 

“I love animals. I have two cats, and they were very weak when we adopted them,” Pelham said. “I would love to comfort animals in the shelters in the same way that the shelter comforted my pets.”

The Pets in Need Club plans to continue to operate next year with more goals regarding interaction with the shelter.

“I want to actually make it happen for us to be able to go into the shelter,” Chang-Linenberg said. “My goal is to help the organization bring together animal lovers and educate others about the organization and animals.”