By MARVIN HAMLETT
Everybody deserves a second chance, including abandoned animals.
That’s the motto of “Til The End Of Time Animal Sanctuary,” which is located in Appomattox on Phelps Branch Road.
The sanctuary provides stray cats and dogs with a fighting chance to find a good home.
“We believe that all creatures deserve a chance to carry out their lives as intended,” said Laurie Walsh, president of the sanctuary. “We believe in giving all creatures a second chance that they otherwise would not be given. To live out their lives til the end of time.”
Til The End Of Time Animal Sanctuary consists of a 2,000-square-foot, fenced in housing facility that can handle up to 60 animals.
The building has nine rooms, all with windows and indoor/outdoor runs. Each room has its own window bed, pyramids, feeding stations, sealed epoxy floors and outdoor enclosed runs.
“We specialize in housing domestic animals that are special needs, handicapped, seniors and ferals,” Walsh said. “We give them a chance to live out their lives ‘til the end of time,’ in a loving, caring environment.”
The alternative, for most of these picked-up animals, would be euthanasia.
“We do not euthanize,” Walsh said. “We are here to help educate the public, work together with the community, and share our experiences with local youth groups.”
Currently, the 501 (c) 3 non-profit business operates on three paid subcontractors and four volunteers. The subcontractors are Jesse McConnell, Anne Marie Ramsey and Kelly Tracy.
The sanctuary “is here for the community.”
“We rescue and try to adopt out animals to good homes,” Walsh said. “And if we cannot adopt out the animals, they can live out their life til the end of time, which is why we have that name.”
Til The End Of Time Animal Sanctuary has some needs and encourages folks to donate. The following is a wish list of the sanctuary:
* Purina cat chow dry food
* Friskies can food
* Pine bedding
* Whiska’s box milk
* Cat/dog toys
* Dog bones
* Paper towels
* Lysol wipes
* Laundry detergent
* Dish washing detergent
* Postage stamps
* Office supplies/envelopes
* Yard sale items
* Dog food
Anyone seeking to make a donation can contact Walsh at 434-607-7994.
While the business address is at 260 Phelps Branch Road, donations should be mailed to P.O. Box 395, Spout Spring, Va., 24593.
Folks may also visit the website email@example.com
“The public has been very helpful with donations and helping us with fundraisers,” Walsh said. “We operate on public donations and fundraisers. We are always in the need of both monetary and material donations, along with dedicated volunteers.”
Walsh encourages youth groups to get involved with the sanctuary, and she has already received assistance from girl scouts, eagle scouts and a project involving students at Cornerstone Christian Academy.
“We get involved a lot with youth organizations to educate them, and we like to get involved with local schools,” Walsh said. “We do encourage (citizens) to contact us for a tour.”
She also hopes to start a Felines and Felons program to work with the local court system.
A Lynchburg native, the 51-year-old Walsh resides in Appomattox.
She started this project about 16 years ago in New Jersey.
“Basically, I used to be a contractor in historical restorations, and I noticed an overwhelming amount of strays running around the city streets,” she said.
So she founded her business, and she said it wound up being one of the largest on the East Coast.
“I want to thank Dr. Berger from Appomattox Animal Hospital and Dr. Dixon from Diamond Hill Animal Hospital in Lynchburg for working with us,” Walsh said. “Both have been great.”
Walsh is married and has two grown children: Kelly and Amy. She attends Our Lady of Peace Catholic Church.