Local Shelter Gets a Helping Paw

Fund-raiser organizer, Maggie Brown, welcomes guests to the event
Fund-raiser organizer, Maggie Brown, welcomes guests to the event

By Penny Ellison
The Parsons Advocate
Ever wonder what’s up with the next generation?  You often hear how the digital age youth are self-absorbed and lack the desire toward service organizations and volunteerism that previous generations so readily took place in. One Tucker County young woman is dispelling that notion with her selfless devotion to the local animal shelter. Margaret “Maggie” Brown, daughter of Phill and Melissa Brown, has been a resident of Tucker County most of her twenty one years.  Brown, who lives in Davis, just graduated from Potomac State College of WVU with a degree in Equine Production and Management.

Brown’s love of animals started at a very young age and has been a life-long passion.  She volunteers at the Tucker County Animal Shelter and also has fostered many animals. When asked why she created and took on the task of running a fundraiser for the shelter, Brown replied:  “The shelter is very much overwhelmed, so many animals, so little help.”

At a time in life where most young people are out enjoying themselves,  Brown threw herself into the fundraising project as a labor of love.  Admitting that she didn’t have a clue where to begin with the event she turned to friend, Heather Hannah-Nelson, to help her brainstorm. Hannah-Nelson, also a twenty something young woman, resides in Thomas with her husband and daughter.  Brown credits her with coming up with the location and corralling talented fellow musicians to donate their time and talent to play during the event.


Patrons enjoying the evening at the fund-raiser
Patrons enjoying the evening at the fund-raiser

Brown was able to get Buxton and Landstreet Gallery and Studio to donate the use of their location for the evening, working closely with Heidi Haldeen from the gallery.  Brown said Haldeen was very helpful and excited to help out.   For the evening’s refreshments she recruited family and friends to help with the plush spread of appetizers.  Then involved area businesses by garnering door prizes.
When asked how she came up with the idea, Brown replied:  “I just knew they needed help and I wanted to help them.   I asked them first if it’d be o.k.,  Cathy (Parsons) was all excited especially when I told her she didn’t have to do anything, I’d take care of it all!” Parsons, who is the Tucker County Animal Shelter Director, shared this:  “Maggie realized the need we have here in our vet-ting cost.  Not every cat or dog that comes to us are healthy animals.  They come in with treatable ailments or injured, for which the costs mount up considerably.  Sometimes we end up with a hoarder situation where we may receive large numbers of animals at one time all needing seen by the veterinarian.  This puts an incredible strain on the budget.”
Brown’s efforts paid off as just under forty people attended the event which ended up raising $1,375.00 including donations from individuals who sent checks but were unable to attend in person.  All the funds will be sent to pay for vet bills and Brown estimated that it should cover about thirteen animal’s worth.
Brown summed up her efforts with:  “Animals are where my heart is, always has been.”

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