Reading to SPCA Animals is Back!
New Tale for Two Season Offers In-Person and Virtual Options.

September 1, 2021
By: SPCA Chief Communications Officer Gina Lattuca

The SPCA Serving Erie County is now welcoming readers into its 2021 – 2022 season Tale for Two program, encouraging children ages six through 16 to read aloud to adoptable animals at the SPCA, or therapy pets who are volunteers of the SPCA’s Paws for Love program! Animals benefit from the increased socialization and reduced stress levels, while children work on their literacy and reading skills, building their self-esteem and confidence.

If registered for in-person reading, one adult and one child can visit the SPCA’s 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca shelter to read aloud to shelter pets. To remain consistent with COVID-related occupancy guidelines, only six child/adult teams will be allowed on the Adoptions floor at any given time, so space is extremely limited.

Virtual reading will take place on a Zoom call, during which participants will read to a Paws for Love therapy animal. Each virtual session will conclude with an opportunity for the child to ask the shelter representative questions about the animal or the SPCA.

This year’s reading season begins October 4, and is available in a three-month package (program cost: $50 for one 30-minute in-person reading session per week, or unlimited 30-minute virtual reading sessions); a ’21-’22 school year package (program cost: $85 for one 30-minute in-person reading session per week, or unlimited 30-minute virtual reading sessions; this package has an end date of June 9, 2022); or a full year 12-month package (program cost: $125 for one 30-minute in-person reading session per week, or unlimited 30-minute virtual reading sessions; this package has an end date of September 15, 2022).

In-person shelter reading opportunities along with virtual reading slots are available Mondays and Wednesdays, 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., at the SPCA’s 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca shelter. 

Children can read from their own reading materials, or make a selection from the SPCA’s library.

REGISTER NOW  to choose your reading package and to select your desired virtual orientation date (orientation is mandatory for adults and recommended for the child readers). Space is extremely limited. For more information on Tale for Two, please contact SPCA Director of Humane Education Christine Davis at 716-875-7360, ext. 262, or christined@yourspca.org .

Register for TALE FOR TWO now!


From the SPCA’s Humane Education Department regarding the safety of children participating in one of the Humane Ed programs:

“The SPCA Serving Erie County has and always has had strict cleaning and safety policies in place due to the nature of animal sheltering and the potential for zoonotic disease exposure. During the age of COVID-19, we will follow all CDC guidelines and recommendations. At this time, the SPCA Humane Education Department requires social distancing and masks for all participants, regardless of vaccination status. There will also be a temperature check and COVID screening prior to entry.”

Check out all the fun from this summer’s SPCA Kindness Camp 2021! Just click on the image below to see our album of 200+ camp photos!

Future camp space is extremely limited.

Be the first to know about vacation day, break, and summertime camps at the SPCA and register children early!

Just email your name and other contact information to HumaneEducation@yourspca.org and you’ll receive early notice and updates before details are released to the general public!

SEE YOU AT CAMP!

SPCA Launches Tale for Two Summer Reading Challenge; Program Encourages Children to Read to Shelter Pets

June 8, 2021
By: SPCA Chief Communications Officer Gina Lattuca

UPDATE, JULY 7: All slots for this summer’s Tale for Two Reading Challenge have been filled! That’s a lot of dedicated readers! Look for more Tale for Two sessions in the fall, when we resume normal programming. Thanks for all the interest! Good luck readers!


UPDATE, JUNE 23: Tale for Two has received such an overwhelming response to its in-person reading slots that members of the SPCA’s Humane Education Department have added Thursday in-person options to the roster. In addition to the options listed below, children can now be registered to read aloud to shelter animals in person on Thursdays, 5 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.


The SPCA Serving Erie County has announced its 2021 Tale for Two Summer Reading Challenge this year, with prizes for children who read multiple books!

Tale For Two encourages children ages 5 – 16 to read aloud to adoptable animals at the SPCA. Animals benefit from the increased socialization and reduced stress levels, while children work on their literacy and reading skills, building their self-esteem and confidence.

This summer’s reading challenge sessions include both in-person and virtual options to be scheduled June 28 – September 1, 2021.

In-person 30-minute reading sessions take place Mondays and Wednesdays between 5 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Six families will be welcomed for each 30-minute time slot, for a maximum of 18 families each day. Virtual Zoom 30-minute reading sessions are available Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

The cost of a Tale for Two Summer Reading Challenge pass is $50.00, which allows children to read once per week to an SPCA animal in person at the
300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca shelter, once per week to an SPCA animal virtually, or both.

Children in kindergarten through eleventh grade who read multiple books receive certificates of achievement and various SPCA prizes ranging from pencils and wristbands to T-shirts and sweatshirts. The top two children who read the most books will receive a small collection of age-appropriate books for their reading libraries, and memberships to the SPCA’s Kind Kids Club.

Children can bring their own reading materials, or make a selection from the SPCA’s library.

Readers and parents/guardians are required to be part of one hour-long ZOOM orientation session, during which

reading challenge details and rules will be discussed. Orientation sessions are scheduled for Monday, June 21 and Thursday, June 24 at 5:30 p.m. If attendance at one of these sessions is not possible, participants will have the opportunity to watch a recorded orientation session and complete a required orientation questionnaire.

 

Register for the Tale for Two Summer Reading Challenge and one orientation session right here >> 

Register for the SPCA’s Tale for Two Summer Reading Challenge here >>


SUMMER, 2021 MASK POLICY FOR HUMANE EDUCATION PROGRAM PARTICIPANTS:
At this time, face masks are REQUIRED for all adults and children participating in Humane Education programs, regardless of vaccination; for all unvaccinated adults and children; and for all children 11 years of age and younger.

SPCA Camp-At-Home Kits

GET YOUR SPCA CAMP-AT-HOME KIT(S) HERE!

SPCA Camp-At-Home Kits let kids ages five through nine bring the fun of the SPCA home…or to any vacation location!…in an engaging, screen-free way!

Two different kits include step-by-step instructions on all craft and activity supplies; age-appropriate books; an issue of “Kind News;” an SPCA water bottle; and an SPCA wristband and pencil. Children will learn lessons about animal care, nature, and more that will keep them thinking and creating long after kit activities are complete.

SPCA Camp-At-Home Kits will be available July 6 – September 1, 2021, and include:

Rescue a Furry Friend!
Ages 5 – 9
$35.00
Children will learn about and practice the five elements of pet care and responsible pet ownership by caring for their very own pet….PLUSH pet, that is! They will rescue their new, furry friend, then foster it, care for it, and eventually ADOPT! Each activity will allow children to explore a different component of care through hands-on activities, crafts, and experiments.

Arts and Nature
Ages 5 – 9
$35.00
This is a self-paced activity kit for animal lovers with a creative side! Campers will have the opportunity to express themselves creatively through fun, impactful, indoor/outdoor crafts and activities! All required craft materials and instructions will be included in each kit.


The health and safety of our participants are our primary concerns, so all kit materials have been disinfected and handled by healthy staff members wearing masks and gloves.

Kits will be available via curbside pickup, or can be delivered within Erie County at an additional cost. Kits can also be shipped at an additional cost.

CURBSIDE PICKUP
Curbside pickup will be available at the SPCA’s 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca shelter Monday – Saturday, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.

DELIVERY
Delivery is only offered for locations within Erie County, NY.

SHIPPING
If you live inside or outside of Erie County, NY,  and  you are unable to pick up your kit at the SPCA, you may wish to have your kit shipped to you. Backpacks are shipped at an additional fee to be determined.

Register for your child’s kit here . For more information, contact SPCA Director of Humane Education Christine Davis: 716-875-7360, ext. 262 or ChristineD@yourspca.org

GET YOUR SPCA CAMP-AT-HOME KIT(S) HERE!
 


From the SPCA’s Humane Education Department regarding the safety of your children: “The SPCA Serving Erie County has and always has had strict cleaning and safety policies in place due to the nature of animal sheltering and the potential for zoonotic disease exposure. During the age of COVID-19, we will follow all CDC guidelines and recommendations, require masks, require social distancing, and will temperature-check and screen for COVID prior to entry. In addition, extensive sanitizing protocols are in place, including sanitizing areas before and after use, to keep our participants and staff safe and healthy while participating in any in-person program.”

At this time, face masks are REQUIRED for all adults and children participating in Humane Education programs, regardless of vaccination; for all unvaccinated adults and children; and for all children 11 years of age and younger when on the grounds of the SPCA.

A Tale of Patrick, Gracie, & Allison!

June 8, 2021 — Longtime Tale for Two reader Patrick Radtke enjoys coming to the SPCA to read to shelter pets, but this compassionate, young man usually has a special request.

According to SPCA Humane Education Director Christine Davis, “Unlike many of our other readers, Patrick prefers to read to the cats in the caged areas. He realizes they are often not selected to be read to because they are in cages. Patrick feels they could use the enrichment and attention as well!”

Looking at this photo, we believe our gorgeous GRACIE agrees!

And check out what Patrick is reading to Gracie! Author Allison Gutknecht (Instagram: @AllisonPolkaDot) just released Pet Pals: Mitzy’s Homecoming, and graciously donated a signed copy to us!

Not only did Gracie give it the highest review possible…two paws up…but according to Christine, Patrick told us that HE is now creating a book, and he, too, would like to donate one to us when he finishes it! Allison’s gift has made many people and pets, today and in the future, very, very happy!

If you’re a parent or guardian of a child ages five through 16 who would like to read to shelter pets, read more about the SPCA’s Tale for Two Summer Reading Challenge right here >>

–Gina Lattuca, SPCA Chief Communications Officer

SCHOLASTIC BOOK FAIR
to benefit the SPCA Serving Erie County
In-person fair through May 22
Online fair through May 25

Ages 5 – 14
25% of your purchase benefits the SPCA!
Family-friendly pricing!

IN-PERSON
Visit the SPCA Serving Erie County, 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca
Monday – Saturday, May 17 – 22, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

ONLINE
Visit https://www.scholastic.com/bf/spcaec 
through May 25 for titles, information on how to purchase, and details on browsing nearly
300 titles by grade! You’ll meet popular authors, watch book videos,
and gain direct access to more than 6,000 additional titles!

MORE INFORMATION
Contact Director of Humane Education Christine Davis
(716) 875-7360, ext. 262 or
ChristineD@yourspa.org

SPCA Serving Erie County Offers Virtual Field Trips and Tours to Classrooms and Other Groups

April 1, 2021
By: SPCA  Chief Communications Officer Gina Lattuca

SPCA Pop-Up Quiz:
My classroom cannot take a field trip to the SPCA.
___True  ___False

Your answer:
True

Our response:
Think again!

Right now, the SPCA Serving Erie County is offering virtual field trips and tours for school classrooms, homeschool groups, after-school programs, scouting groups, camp groups, and more!

A $50.00 tour fee will virtually bring participants to the SPCA’s 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca shelter, where everyone will “visit” adoptable animals, Educational Farm permanent and temporary residents, wild animals receiving treatment in the Wildlife Department, enjoy an up-close-and-personal meeting with one of our animal ambassadors, and more!

Virtual tours can be personalized to showcase specific animals or subjects that tie in with classroom lessons and group needs, and can even include a virtual scavenger hunt!

Tours last approximately 30 minutes. For more information on virtual field trips and tours, please contact SPCA Humane Educator Katherine Gillette-Cockerill at KatherineG@yourspca.org, or (716) 875-7360, ext. 234.

Drawn to Community Recognizes Extraordinary Girls Who Are Using Creativity and Passion to Inspire Their Communities!

Cartoon Network Celebrates International Women’s Day with Five Awesome Girls Who Take Action and Champion Community.

March 8, 2021

Watch the video NOW! >>

{EDITOR’S NOTE: Watch Gabby and these other inspiring young ladies March 8, 2021 on Cartoon Network: 8:25 a.m., 12:25 p.m., 3:25 p.m., 5:25 p.m., & 7:58 p.m.!}

Cartoon Network is celebrating International Women’s Day with the premiere of Drawn to Community on Monday, March 8. This installment of the Drawn To series features five remarkable girls who are leading their generation towards a brighter future. From reading to animals, to distributing art kits, to creating virtual cooking classes, these inspiring girls are empowering others to get involved and make an impact in their local communities.

The Drawn to Community opening graphics were designed by London-based illustrator Lucy Kirk. All Drawn To episodes are available on CN, the CN App, and across the network’s social platforms.

Gabby, 6
Volunteer for The SPCA Serving Erie County

Gabby participates in the “Tale for Two” program at her local SPCA, which encourages children to read aloud to adoptable animals, allowing them to benefit from the socialization, while children work on their reading skills. More information about the SPCA and its programs can be found at https://YourSPCA.org.

Chelsea, 11
Founder, Chelsea’s Charity

Chelsea’s Charity donates art supplies and art lessons to children in need to support social, emotional and mental health development through art. Viewers can learn more at https://www.chelseascharity.com.

Megan, 5
Fundraiser for the Humane Society

Megan creates and sells custom, hand-painted t-shirts to benefit the Humane Society. She says, “It takes $25 a day to take care of one dog. Helping the Humane Society makes me feel good!” For more ways to help, please visit http://www.humanesociety.org.

Niyoshi, 14
Cultural Event Planner

Niyoshi took her love of cooking and baking and turned it into a monthly get together creating dishes from different cultures and connecting the community. It is also an opportunity to learn about each other’s backgrounds while having fun and making new friends.

Simone, 10
Founder of non-profit, Kids that Give Back

With the help of generous donors, Kids that Give Back has provided toys to kids in hospitals, books to homeless kids, and food and toiletry items to homeless families throughout Washington DC, Maryland and Virginia. Find out more at https://www.kidsthatgiveback.org.

Cartoon Network recently announced the expansion of its content series Drawn To with new installments of monthly vignettes to be launched throughout the year. Each episode features inspirational stories from real-life kids having fun and sharing common interests such as spending time with family and helping out in their communities. The series seeks to elevate these voices, highlight diverse cultures and provide a meaningful glimpse at the passions that bring kids together to celebrate unity and connectivity in a sometimes uncertain world. Each Drawn To is produced in partnership with local artists to cultivate authentic connections with the topics discussed.

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Cartoon Network is the central Kids & Family brand within WarnerMedia and the #1 global animated series network. Combined with a rich legacy of characters and a deep roster of creatives with unique brands of storytelling, Cartoon Network showcases original content from across Cartoon Network Studios, Warner Bros. Animation and beyond that includes such hits as Ben 10, Craig of the Creek, Steven Universe, Teen Titans Go! and more. Under its Redraw Your World tagline, Cartoon Network’s expansive content commitment appeals to the complete spectrum of kids and families including preschoolers, all kids ages 6-11, and family co-viewing. Upcoming new series such as Gremlins, Jade Armor, Total Drama Island, Unicorn: Warriors Eternal, as well as a live-action slate are set to comprise an inclusive Kids & Family programming lineup on Cartoon Network and HBO Max offering more than 300 hours of original content. Seen in more than 185 countries and in 33 languages, Cartoon Network’s historic library can also be streamed on HBO Max.