Video – PAW: People for Animal Well-being

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    A student has brought the group back to campus in hopes to save animals before it’s too late.

    One student organization partnered with a local non-profit organization to raise money and awareness for their common cause.

    Sophomore Lora Choi decided to bring the student-organization People for Animal Well-Being, or PAW, back on-campus this year. She set a goal to raise awareness about animal cruelty among students.

    “It’s everywhere, especially with the economy going down, a lot of people can’t afford to have pets and pay for them, pay for food and take care of them,” Choi said. “So a lot of people are letting them go out on the streets.”

    A Fort Worth organization called Cowtown Loves Animal Shelter Pets, or CLASP, emailed Choi about needing extra volunteers. CLASP provided care for neglected and abandoned animals but solely used volunteers to run the operation.

    In response, Choi decided that PAW should hold a fundraiser to benefit the group.

    “We are a community-based service organization, so we really want to work with organizations around campus and in the Fort Worth area,” Choi said. “We need to benefit each other and the whole community.”

    PAW organized a bake sale outside the library to raise the extra money for CLASP and increase student awareness at the same time.

    “Hopefully we’ll get the word out there that PAW does exist and we’re out there,” Choi said. “And there’s a lot of animal groups in the Fort Worth area and you know, basically help animals find good homes, get fed and things like that.”

    Lori Stowe, administrative assistant for the Center for Instructional Services, had been a dog rights activist and foster dog owner. She said she joined PAW because she felt her contacts in the area could help to raise awareness.

    “We can give them a lot of information before they go out and buy a pet, or purchase something from a pet store or backyard breeder,” Stowe said. “We hope they’ll be more knowledgeable and there’s less of a likelihood that the dog will go to a rescue.”

    According to Pet-Abuse.com, in 2009 Texas had over 2,000 pet deaths caused by various types of cruelty, the majority of which were from neglect and abandonment.

    Choi said educating people was a necessity because the shelters had been reaching their capacity.

    “You have pets that are a part of your family,” Choi said. “And if you really care about animals then you should care about the things going on around the world with them.”

    Junior Jennifer Brown, an advertising major, said even though she had never heard of PAW or CLASP before, she was happy to donate money because of her love of animals.

    “I hope that it will help somebody,” Brown said.

    Choi said she hoped next semester PAW would gain more members and be able to offer services, like dog walking, for the community.

    See what the president of PAW, Lora Choi, had to say at http://blip.tv/file/3535414

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