In 1935, the SPCA Aiken was established and worked for decades helping animals in the CSRA and beyond. After a fire outbreak at the previous facility, it was time to think big and imagine a future at a new facility. After a major capital campaign supported by the generous Aiken community, the current facility at 199 Willow Run Road was opened on Sept. 30, 2012 with a new name, the SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare.
Since that time, the organization has continued to change lives. We depend solely upon local donations to support our efforts to save the lives of animals in our community, and receive no regular funding from state or federal agencies, or from the ASPCA (a completely separate entity).
Our success is due to the efforts of dedicated SPCA Albrecht Center employees and volunteers, support from our Board of Directors, as well as the generous donations and continued support of our animal-loving community. The Albrecht Center currently has 171 active volunteers who have donated 11,668 volunteer hours in 2022 alone.
On Sunday, employees, supporters, volunteers and donors took a little time to celebrate the last 10 years in the Willow Run location and raise money to help us continue operations. The fundraising event “Wine, Wags & Whiskers: Celebrating 10 years of the SPCA Albrecht Center” was originally scheduled for Oct. 2 at the historic Constantine House. However, the threat of bad weather from Hurricane Ian caused us to postpone the event. We were not deterred, and attendees showed up a week later under clear skies for music, food, drinks and celebration on a beautiful fall evening in Aiken. We are still processing the expenses, but we expect that the sold-out event raised more than $15,000 for the homeless animals in our care. We are so grateful for the sponsors, attendees and supporters who made the event a great success.
The SPCA Albrecht Center averages over 250 animals relying on us to provide them with food, housing, veterinary care and, ultimately, find them a loving forever home. In the last 10 years, we have had a significant impact for the animals in our community. Our sheltering operations provides lost pet services, re-homes animals in need, assists law enforcement with animal needs, including large-scale intakes, and helps animals after natural disasters, just to name a few of our services. In 2022 alone, the SPCA Albrecht Center has helped over 1,056 animals as part of our sheltering operations. In the last 10 years, the SPCA Albrecht Center has helped 11,574 shelter animals.
The SPCA Albrecht Center’s affordable, full-service Veterinary Care Center offers spay and neuter surgeries, vaccines, microchips, veterinary exams and routine care to both our shelter pets and the community’s pets. Since the Veterinary Care Center opened, we have performed the following:
• Dog vaccines = 26,543
• Cat vaccines = 18,753
• Rabies vaccine = 37,563
• Heartworm tests = 15,492
• Microchips = 15,301
• Cat spay or neuter surgeries = 13,230
• Dog spay or neuter surgeries = 11,996
In case you were not able to participate in our 10-year celebration, we have another great event coming up, especially if you love shopping! The SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare operates a boutique Thrift Store at 1589 Whiskey Road that offers everything from pet care items and clothing, to jewelry, furniture and more. 100% of the revenue from every sale at the Thrift Store goes to the SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare to help feed, treat, shelter and find loving homes for the animals in our care.
We have two events coming up at that Thrift Store. On Dec. 10, we are having a Second Saturday Sale just in time to help you with all your Christmas shopping. There will be storewide discounts on most of the merchandise. So, save the date to do your Christmas shopping where shopping saves lives.
Also, on Monday, Nov. 7, from 6 to 8 p.m., we are having our annual Thrift Store holiday party called “Tiki Bow Wow: A Hawaiian Holiday.” Tickets are just $10 in advance; $20 at the door. Tickets double as a 10% off coupon (to use the night of event ONLY). We will serve light refreshments, raffles, drinks and have a treasure hunt. Plus, a first-look, first-buy of our newest merchandise just in time for the holidays! Tickets can be purchased on our website at LetLoveLive.org.
We have been honored to serve our community and change so many lives at the Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare for the last 10 years, and for decades before that at other locations. We are deeply grateful to the CSRA community for your continued support of our life-saving work. We look forward to continuing to serve our community for many decades to come.