As soon as the storms and flooding struck the south, American Humane Association responded.
Our Animal Emergency Services staff immediately contacted local communities and partner agencies. We gave grants and supplies to storm-affected shelters in Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina. Then, on May 3, our Red Star Animal Emergency Services™ team deployed to Memphis, where they rescued and sheltered hundreds of desperate animal victims of the horrible floods there.
Skies have cleared and floodwaters have receded, but our work is not done.
It’s time to refresh, regroup and refocus on the task of rebuilding the community physically and emotionally. With Disney TV star Orlando Brown, our newest National Ambassador, we’re launching a “Hope Tour” in Memphis to honor the city’s valiant First Responders, to provide financial support and supplies to area animal shelters and to bring cheer to community members after this disaster.
Yesterday was a day full of inspiring interactions with the amazing people of Memphis. In the morning, we hosted a country ham and biscuits “Community Heroes Appreciation Breakfast” for Memphis’ First Responders. We met with the staff of Shelby County EMS, who care so much about their community members that they’re going back into flood zones to check on residents who wouldn’t or couldn’t evacuate.
In the afternoon, we visited local animal shelters and shelters for displaced families. We delivered a grant to the Humane Society of Memphis and Shelby County and brought along to share these 10 tips to keep children and animals safe after a disaster, which our animal and child welfare experts put together. Orlando Brown gave a dance performance that wow-ed the locals. He encouraged the children to dream big and have hope for the future — while teacing them the famous Peter Pan dance!
I have hope for the Memphis’ recovery, and I hope you do too.
I can’t tell you what it means to me to be able to reach out to these wonderful people in Memphis who have been through so much in the past few weeks. I am so grateful to be a part of American Humane Association and its 134-year effort to build safe, healthy and humane communities for the voiceless and the vulnerable. And I am so proud to be here right now with the magnificent women and men who have done so much for the city of Memphis.