BRISTOL, VA - A local teacher is going the extra mile to help a special type of hurricane victim-- the furry, four-legged ones. The pounds for pets initiative was started by Highland View Elementary first grade teacher, Alyssa Hunt. Her students not only brought in donations for Hurricane Harvey pets, but they also helped load the truck.
Many in our area are finding ways to help recent hurricane victims. This first grade teacher in finding a way to help, the furry victims.
"Every type of drive was all for humans, none of it was for our four-legged friends or for the people with cattle and horses and those things for the ranchers," Hunt says.
Hunt saw the need for a drive to collect supplies for pets impacted by the hurricane.
"My wife Alyssa wanted to start the Pounds for Pets with the Bristol, Virginia City Schools," says Alyssa's husband and HAPCO employee, J.D. Hunt.
"I wanted to do this project, I really did. I had no clue how to ship it. I had no idea," Alyssa says.
Alyssa explained her shipping concerns to HAPCO.
"We just contacted them just to see if they could or would be able to send it, and they said they have some contacts in Houston at places they ship to, so they're willing to do it because they too were wanting to get involved and do something to help out," Alyssa says.
With the help of her students and other outside organizations like Southern States and G&B Garage Services, Pounds for Pets became a success, collecting 940 pounds of food and supplies, making for a lesson in community service for the children.
"Sometimes we get things donated to us and the kids enjoy it so it's important to teach them that we get things, but it's also important to give things to help others," Alyssa says.
"I thought it was fun to put the dog food in the truck," says first grader Peyton Barrett.
HAPCO is glad to lend a helping hand.
"In time of disaster and devastation, we just want to make sure that we do our part and help out. We see everything they're going through there and it's always good to be able to reach out and help someone in need," J.D. says.
With the help of HAPCO, nearly 1,000 pounds of pet food and supplies will be shipped immediately to Texas.
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