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Study Club members learn about Free State Four Paws

One of the joys of being able to resume some type of normalcy since COVID is to attend meetings in person and to learn about new projects.

This was the case recently for five Book Lovers Study Club members. Early morning Oct. 9, Patricia Cox, Cheri McCain, Brenda Oliver, Gayle McAlister and I traveled together to Double Springs to attend the GFWC Alabama North District Fall meeting.

Poppy’s Place, located on Smith Lake, was the perfect site, with its beautiful fall colors as the backdrop and lovely outside fall decorations and buildings. The host club was the GFWC Double Springs Study Club.

Clubwomen from counties in north Alabama and state AFWC officers congregated for the meeting.

Glennis Posey welcomed the attendees. The Response was given by Patricia Cox, which included an invitation to everyone to attend the GFWC Alabama North District Spring meeting in Russellville in March 2022.

Johnna Franks, of the Free State Four Paws, presented an informative program on the local dog rescue group.

Their mission is to reduce the overpopulation, abuse and neglect of domestic animals in Winston County and to serve their communities by educating and encouraging responsible pet ownership, with emphasis on the need for spay and neutering.

This is a shelter-less animal rescue, where compassionate volunteers donate their time and resources to help save animals’ lives and then provide care through vetting, vaccinations and fostering until the animals can be placed into loving homes.

It is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, and its website is maintained by volunteers.

Attendees and clubs gave dog food and monetary donations for the Free State Four Paws to purchase pet supplies and food.

Another project covered was the Purple Leash Project. Statistics show an estimated one in three women and one in four men experience some form of domestic abuse in their lifetimes, but only 15 percent of domestic violence shelters accept victims who have pets.

Seventy-one percent of women in domestic violence shelters report their abuser threatened, injured or killed a pet as a means of control. Nearly half of victims stay in abusive situations rather than leave their pet behind.

In 2019 Purina and RedRover partnered to launch the Purple Leash Project to increase the number of pet-friendly domestic violence shelters nationwide and spread awareness about this vital issue.

Also as part of the district meeting, various reports were given by state, national, district and club officers. A silent auction that included home-baked items as well as holiday items and other treasures was held to raise money for the North District Scholarship.

Plans for the 127th Annual GFWC Alabama Federation of Women’s Clubs Convention were covered. It will be held April 22-23, 2022, at Joe Wheeler State Park.

The meeting concluded with the reading of the Collect.

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