The public have thrown their weight behind a campaign to raise a quarter of a million pounds to save Benvardin Animal Rescue Kennel (BARK) as volunteers are in a race against time to secure the future of the kennels and the numerous animals rescued and re-homed there.
The site was bought recently by the USPCA, which had been locked into a long-term lease agreement with the previous owner.
However, the charity has to recoup the money and has listed the site for sale.
Following the news an on-line campaign was set up to raise the money and within hours £3,000 was raised.
Volunteer Sean McIntyre commented: “It’s brilliant to have raised so much in a short space of time. however, we desperately need the public to get behind us even more as the land is costing £225,000. So many people say to us the work you do is fantastic and that they couldn’t do without us and this is the time for them to really show how much we mean.
“Time is at a premium for us because anyone could come in with an offer on the land and snatch it from under us. It’s crucial that we raise the money as soon as possible to prevent us losing our kennels. We save hundreds of dogs and we want to continue the work we do.
“We are due to meet with the bank this week but we need the help of the general public so badly. There are a number of fund raising events being organised.
“There’s a sponsored dog walk; Coleraine High School are having a non uniform day, Crossfit Coleraine are organising a sponsored event, there’s a pub quiz on 19th February in the Port Hotel and we will be holding a coffee morning as well.
“We have a number of ways the public can donate. You can go to: http://www.totalgiving.co.uk/appeal/keepbenvardinopen or by going to paypal: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_s-xclick&hosted_button_id=HTANF4QXQDKKL
Cheques can be made payable to Benvardin Kennels and posted to 28 Benvardin Road, Ballymoney, BT53 8AF; you can donate by Bank lodgement or transfer: Danske Bank, Account number: 60105252 Sort code: 95-02-37 or make a donation at any of the Jollye’s Petfood Stores in the UK or Northern Ireland, just tell the cashier it’s a donation for BARK,” explained Sean.