By Annie Christman

An under-appreciated but ever-important organization in our community is the Homeward Bound pet shelter. What distinguished this non-profit from other animal shelters in their altruism and love for pets and their no-kill policy. For 40 years, Homeward Bound has been protecting McMinnville’s animals in need through adoption, foster programs, and community partnerships.

Homeward Bound encourages aspiring pet-owners in the community to visit them at 10601SE Loop RD in McMinnville. Those looking to adopt can visit on Monday-Saturday from 10:00 AM-to 5:00 PM or on Sunday by appointment only.

For those who can’t commit to adopting, fostering a homeless cat or dog can be a great opportunity to help an innocent animal in need, and bond with one of our beloved furry friends. Foster-owners are needed to lighten the amount of animals the shelter has to support.

Can’t adopt? Not ready to be a foster-owner? Got time? The Homeward Bound Shelter has a great appreciation for anyone looking to volunteer. Volunteers can choose from 2 different shifts per day (8:00 AM-12:00 PM and 12:00 PM-4:00 PM). Volunteers can interact with animals by socializing with them, walking them, grooming them, all which are tasks that must be performed daily.

While some jobs may be less glamorous, the shelter also needs aid with cleaning the catteries and kennels, doing laundry, mopping, and cleaning litter boxes, but for those not looking to get their hands dirty, help is needed answering phones, filing, and cleaning the office.

Another accomplishment of Homeward Bound is their Angel Fund program. When animals are disabled or injured, it can be hard for low-income families to provide for their extra needs. The Angel Fund program provides Veterinarian services to eligible owners of disabled pets who can’t afford to pay for it themselves. This great accomplishment and act of benevolence was greatly aided by a $5000 grant from Barfield Foundation Financial Support and is a great example of how donations can help Homeward Bound continue to protect underprivileged pets.

Homeward Bound is a great non-profit organization who is doing good in this community for all of our furry friends and animal-lovers are encouraged to offer their support.