MONTCLAIR, NJ – Montclair Township Animal Shelter (MTAS) showed off the $40,000 makeover to the cat rooms at a grand opening event Saturday. The cat rooms got a much-needed makeover thanks to Rescue Rebuild, a GreaterGood.org community-driven animal shelter renovation program, and to the Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation. Donations of $20,00 from each organization provided for materials, labor, and services.
“The much-needed renovations will now allow us to expand our children’s reading program – kids come to the Shelter to read to the animals,” said Shelter Director Liz Morgan. “Reading aloud to a dog or cat helps boost a child’s confidence, reading skills and self-esteem, while also providing a benefit to the animals receiving undivided attention from the kids,” she said. “Prior to the makeover, the Shelter’s cat room poorly set up for the program due to lack of seating. We now have a nice big bench for children and their parents to sit, relax and read to the animals.”
In addition to seating, the team of volunteers also helped assemble new, high-quality cages and raised beds for the cages.
“We added enrichment features for the cats as well – the volunteers built cat bridges and a variety of cubbies, allowing the cats to have plenty of different spaces to relax, hide and play,” said Ms. Morgan.
In April of 2016, a fire broke out in the Shelter and all the animals had to be evacuated. Since then, the Shelter has not had the resources to fully recover the cat rooms.
“With generous support from Rescue Rebuild and the Boehringer Ingelheim Cares Foundation, the Shelter is not only able to house more cats, we’re also providing them with a much more enjoyable environment to live in,” said Ms. Morgan.