A bully prevention program received a boost from the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation. A $25,000 Coachella Valley Spotlight grant was awarded to Animal Samaritans to bring its kindness presentations into more area classrooms.
“We believe that kindness to living beings is learned. Our humane education programs are helping create a new generation of kinder, more respectful citizens,” said Tom Snyder, CEO of Animal Samaritans. “The presentations are relatable in many areas of life and can also stop and prevent cycles of human abuse and bullying.”
Animal Samaritans offers a variety of bilingual presentations to students in preschool through high school. Each lesson is tailored to each age group and focuses on topics ranging from basic care for another living being, to neglect and abandonment, to compassion for diversity.
“Children are learning empathy and respect for all living things,” said Catharine Reed, Senior Program Officer for the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation. “These lessons are engaging and can go beyond kindness toward animals and also teach kids to respect themselves and their peers.”
Animal Samaritans was founded in 1978 with a simple mission to improve the lives of people and animals. Beyond the humane education programming, the nonprofit organization offers low-cost and no-cost spay and neuter services; low-cost vaccinations; microchipping; shelter and care; and adoptions to lifelong homes. Animal Samaritans also offers free services that enhance the bond between people and animals, such as a volunteer-based animal assisted therapy program for hospitals, healthcare and special needs facilities, and juvenile detention centers.
“It’s important for people to know about the correlation between abuse on animals and bullying,” said Jerry Upham, General Manager of Gulf California Broadcast Company, which owns and operates KESQ News Channel 3 and KPSP CBS Local 2. “Animal Samaritans is raising this awareness through its programming, and we are happy to share its message, especially during October, which is National Bullying Prevention Month.”
Through the Coachella Valley Spotlight partnership with the H.N. and Frances C. Berger Foundation and News Channel 3, Animal Samaritans was featured on News Channel 3 programming including “Eye on the Desert” (which airs on CBS Local 2 weeknights at 6:30 p.m.), in public service announcements and on kesq.com. Animal Samaritans has three no-kill shelters and two clinics in the valley. For more information go to www.animalsamaritans.org or call (760) 343-3477.