Donated building will serve as animal shelter in Opp

Published 9:15 am Wednesday, September 20, 2023

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Finding Forever Dog and Cat Rescue in Opp will have a new home following the recent donation of a vintage building and will seek assistance from the public with its restoration efforts.

Built in the 1950s, the building will be restored to run a monthly rummage sale, store foster supplies, and host other fundraisers in the future. Finding Forever is also making other cosmetic changes to the building, including the roof and flooring.

“We were donated this building by one Opp knows and loves: Brandye Koerner. She originally bought the building in hopes of opening her own senior dog rescue one day. Receiving this donation means three things. We can have a home that will allow us to save money on monthly storage rents for donations for our rummage sale. We will always have somewhere to run all of our fundraising events. We will have a designated neutral spot to conduct meet and greets with our animals and potential adopters. All of these things have been a problem finding for us in the past,” volunteer Andi Shepard said.

A monthly rummage sale will be held at the building on the first Saturday of each month.

“Our rummage sale helps in efforts to raise funds. We have held bake sales, participated in events like Opp Fest, and took up donations at Lake Frank Jackson’s Fourth of July fireworks show. It will also serve as the location of some of our new up and coming fundraisers. We hope to fence in a portion of the property one day to utilize for adoption meet and greets as well,” she added.

According to Shepard, several repairs are necessary to bring the building up to code.

“So far, the building has had a new roof put on by Todd Qualls. This cost was covered by donations given by our local supporters. We have also had new plumbing and electrical work done that was donated by Shane and Harry Bailey and new flooring donated and installed by Tom and Sharon Roeser. A ramp was built and labor donated by Jimmy Whigham. All other repairs were completed during many long work days by volunteers such as painting, patching holes in the wall, and ripping down ceiling tiles.”

Finding Forever stated the current need is monetary donations from the public to be used towards bill and essentials for its animals.

“These donations will help us cover our vet bill, which normally ranges between $500-$4,000 depending on the day. Other than that, we are constantly in need of dog food, cat food, cat litter, and dog treats.”

Despite facing many setbacks, Shepard is grateful to serve as a volunteer with the rescue.

“Throughout the year, we have seen many heartbreaking situations where animals were neglected or abused. Our group has had to not only make many tough and hard choices, but we’ve also had to do lots of hard things to help the voiceless animals in our area. Throughout every tough and hard situation, the people that volunteer with us choose to continue on. There is an animal issue in our city and county, and we decided to do what we can to help. I have never been more proud to say I am a part of something like Finding Forever Dog and Cat Rescue,” she said.

The rescue currently has 10 volunteers, eight of which foster animals. There are 45 cats and dogs that are distributed through eight fosters.

“We support spay and neuter and help educate locals about the low cost programs that are available to them. We are a 501(c)(3), which means any donations made are a tax write off. We strictly run off donations and cannot continue to help save the voiceless without them. No animals are housed in this location. Our volunteers are located throughout Opp, Babbie, Andalusia, Covington County, and Coffee County,” Shepard said.

Finding Forever Dog and Cat Rescue is located at 3287 Alford Road in Opp.

For more information email or message the Finding Forever Dog and Cat Rescue Facebook page.