Walmart’s Diana Dowie (top left) and store manager David Hunt (top right) present local SPCA manager Stephanie Arkwright with a cheque for $2

Shoppers and stores support SPCA

Walmart and Save-On Foods matched their customers' donations to build a new shelter in Campbell River

Tom Burton’s hard work is paying off.

More than four months ago, the former Campbell River SPCA volunteer mounted a campaign to raise money for the SPCA to build its own shelter with the help of some of the community’s largest businesses.

On Monday morning, Burton saw his efforts at Walmart pay off as store manager David Hunt presented the SPCA with a cheque for $2,906.

The money was raised over a period of one week at the end of September. Customers had the option of making a donation as they came through the check outs. Walmart then matched those contributions.

On Tuesday, after the Mirror went to press, Burton was also preparing to collect a cheque for the SPCA from Save-On Foods, which also got on board Burton’s fundraising campaign, Raise the Roof.

At Save-On, customers with Save-On More Rewards cards were able to redeem their points in 1,000 point increments towards the SPCA’s building fund. Every 1,000 points were converted into $1 for the SPCA, with Save-On matching the points donated by its customers.

The funds are going towards an account set up by the BC SPCA at Scotia Bank earmarked to go towards a shelter built and owned by the BC SPCA.

Stephanie Arkwright, local SPCA manager, said the building fund is separate from the temporary pet adoption and education centre the SPCA is working to open.

“When people donate it’s going to a long-term shelter, not the one that’s opening up,” Arkwright said. “The centre we’re opening is going to be a leased property but we’re hoping down the road to build our own shelter.”

The SPCA ceased its shelter operations in Campbell River over the Easter weekend after the city awarded the animal impound contract to Coastal Animal Control. Since then, the BC SPCA has been working to re-establish its presence in the city and is currently in the process of working with the city on a re-zoning for a site the SPCA has its eye on.

The SPCA is targeting a place it can lease 2-3 years or until it can afford to build its own shelter.