Kootenay Ice forwards Jaedon Descheneau

Kootenay Ice forwards Jaedon Descheneau

Million Acts of Kindness campaign underway

BC SPCA is starting a province-wide campaign which seeks to bring awareness for the organization and the animals it cares for.

The BC SPCA is starting a province-wide campaign called the Million Acts of Kindness, which seeks to bring awareness for the not-for-profit organization and the animals it cares for.

On Thursday, three members of the Kootenay Ice visited the local shelter — the BC SPCA East Kootenay Branch— to get a look at a number  of recently added puppies that are looking for a home.

“One of the first things that people can do with the Million Acts of Kindness is come out to the Ice game and purchase a tennis ball to win some prizes,”  said Brenna Baker, manager of the EK Branch. That will be tonight’s game (Friday, Feb. 5).

You buy a tennis ball, which will then be tossed on the ice rink. Then dogs  will be let out on the ice to fetch  balls. If your tennis ball is picked up by one of the dogs,  you win a prize.

“We’ll tie that all into the million acts of kindness,” Baker said.

The campaign is about bringing more awareness to the BC SPCA and the work they do.

“The goal is to get the communities on board and people signing up on this website,” Baker said. “Then they can perform acts of kindness. Basically what we’re doing is trying to get rid of cruelty to animals through acts of kindness.”

You can go online to millionacts.ca and sign up to take part in acts of kindness and share your acts. It’s free to sign up.

The BC SPCA is also hoping to get provincial MLAs on board, since it would like government funding to carry out certain programs.

“We’ve never had any provincial funding,” Baker said. “But we definitely need it. Especially our Cruelty Department, because when there is a cruelty investigation, our Cruelty Department is called in to assess the situation. If we have to do seizures, it is up to the SPCA, the RCMP doesn’t do any of that. But we get no provincial or federal funding.”

A lot of the SPCA buildings are outdated in the province as well, so they are trying to build new centres, which again is difficult when there is no funding, she said.

Then National Cupcake Day is coming up Feb. 23, and there will be other cupcake sales up to that point.

“All the money from that will go towards healthcare and the animals,” Baker said, explaining that is mainly made up of vet bills.

The local branch is doing a big fundraiser in April, the Fur Ball which will take place at the Canadian Museum of Rail Travel.

The Million Acts of Kindness will be tied into the Paws for Cause Walk in September.

The local shelter has been in a state of renovation for the past few months, and the new kennels were due to arrive Friday. That will be 20 stainless steel kennels that, once in, will allow other renovations to move forward.

“We’re almost getting there,” Baker said.

Starting next week they will also be able to start taking more cats in. At the moment, she said they have a long waiting list to come in.

“We’ll be able to open that waiting list as soon as those kennels are installed,” Baker said.