SOURCE: HART for Animals

HART for Animals

February 24, 2015 11:15 ET

Charity Raffles Home to Save Homeless Animals

ACCIDENT, MD--(Marketwired - February 24, 2015) - Saving cats and dogs has become a mission for thousands of communities in the U.S. HART for Animals, located in Garrett County, Maryland, one of those communities. It is raising funds to raise the roof of the HART Adoption Wing by raffling a house and 18 other cash prizes as part of their "Forever Home" fundraiser.

In July 2014, HART was awarded a $250,000 grant by the Appalachian Regional Commission, with matching funds to be provided jointly by Garrett County and private donations. The raffle is expected to raise $125,000 towards the construction, from the sale of the 4,000 tickets for a grand prize of a single-family Cape Cod home in Thurmont, Maryland, or 18 cash prizes including the first prize of $5,000. 

Founded in 2003, HART for Animals has been rescuing animals from the county's twelve-kennel shelter and transporting them to larger adoption facilities in locations throughout the region. Prior to the organization's founding, the local shelter was forced to euthanize hundreds of animals each year due to a low adoption rate and shelter capacity. To date, HART has rescued and transported more than 6,500 animals.

In 2009, HART opened a small low-cost spay/neuter clinic for low-income households to help reduce the number of unwanted puppies and kittens and educate pet owners on the value of spaying and neutering. Since that time, HART has performed 6,000 spay/neuter surgeries, reducing the intake to the county shelter by 18%. 

In the second largest land mass county (Frederick being first) in Maryland, Garrett County, by contrast, is the third smallest in population, with a mere 30,000 residents. And while Maryland may be the wealthiest state in the Union, according to the 2010 Census, Western Maryland doesn't fare as well, falling within the state's four poorest counties. Yet, despite its lack of resources, a small group of animal activists has forever changed the landscape of this rural Appalachian mountain community, which is made primarily up of farmland and state and national parks and forests. They raised the money to build the HART Animal Center to carry out their mission.

"A small group of fiercely committed people became determined to change the lives of homeless cats and dogs in Western Maryland," says Mercedes Pellet, HART's development director. "So, in 2007 we rolled up our sleeves, and knowing that without challenges, there is no change, began a capital fundraising campaign to build, from the ground up, a dedicated, state-of-the-art facility," she adds. It is with the same determination that HART is now engaged in raffling the house to raise the $125,000 for the Adoption Wing.

In the winter of 2014, the HART Animal Center, located in the popular resort area of Deep Creek Lake, and in the town of Accident, Maryland, opened its doors. Through a combination of private donations, grants, and a loan from the USDA Rural Development's Community Facility Program, the Bredel Veterinary Clinic opened on February 25, 2014. The Bed 'n Bark Inn pet hotel, MUTTWorks Grooming Salon and the HART Shoppe retail store opened in March of the same year.

These services will enable HART for Animals to support its mission of improving the lives of homeless animals by building an animal adoption center where adoptable animals will never have to be euthanized. The revenues generated by these services, along with grants and fundraising efforts, such as the current "Forever Home" house raffle, will support and sustain the operations of the final phase: the HART Adoption Wing, to be completed this year.

The house, valued at $236,000, is located one block from Mount Saint Mary's College, in Thurmont, Maryland. Convenient to Hagerstown, Emmitsburg and Frederick, this newly remodeled 1,419 square foot home on one-quarter acre features a detachable garage, secluded, fenced-in backyard, three bedrooms, one full bath and one half-bath and walk-out basement.

"The beauty of this home is the options when you do win," says HART's executive director, Paula Yudelevit. "You can keep this beautifully-appointed home, sell it or rent it. Being one-block from Mount Saint Mary's College makes selling or renting a profitable option," she concludes. 

With a maximum number of 4,000 tickets for sale, the odds of winning the "Forever Home" are 1 in 4,000. The odds of winning one of the 18 cash prizes are 1 in 210. Tickets are $100 each.

Information on the house, the cash prizes and full rules may be found on the raffle website, Tickets may be purchased on the website or at the HART Animal Center, located at 1265 Bumble Bee Rd., Accident, MD 21520. Information may also be obtained by calling 301.387.7729.

HART for Animals, Inc. is a nonprofit 501 (c)(3) corporation. Donations to HART are tax-deductible. For additional information on HART or any of its charitable programs, visit the HART web site at

Image Available:
Image Available:
Image Available:

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Paula Yudelevit

    P. O. Box 623
    McHenry, MD   21541-0623
    Phone (301) 387-7729
    Fax (240) 597-0058