Hopedale DI Iguanas Choose Pawfect Life Rescue as Service Project for This Years Competition

Lori J. Koller
Issue Date: 
February, 2020
Article Body: 

The Hopedale Elementary School Iguanas, managed by Alysia Butler and Emily Thompson were asked to identify a community need and work with a community partner to address that need as their service learning challenge for the 2020 competition. The team chose Pawfect Life Rescue in Uxbridge as their partner.
Pawfect Life Rescue was chosen in order to help them in their new facility in Uxbridge. Pawfect Life Rescue is a nonprofit shelterless dog rescue that was founded and established in May 2013 by Julie Ploof. They are a dedicated network of volunteers whose mission is to rescue stray dogs and place them in responsible loving homes. They work to educate the community on the importance of proper pet care and define success as the ability to effectively enhance the quality of the lives they touch!
As DI is a kid driven competition, the kids reached out to Julie and asked to meet with her to find out what she needed. Following that meeting, the team developed goals as part of their project and created different fundraising ideas to reach those goals. They decided to collect newspapers, food, and paper towels to help the rescue puppies in the facility, and raise money to offset vet bills incurred when the dogs arrive at the rescue. They surpassed all of their goals: they collected 80+ pounds of newspapers, 30+ rolls of paper towels, food, treats, leashes, and over $1100 in online donations. Some local contributors included Hopedale Cumberland Farms and Hopedale Community House, who saved newspapers for the kids, A fundraising drive was also held at Memorial Elementary School.
The team made up of of seven Hopedale Memorial Elementary fifth grade students: Ryan Thompson, Leo Butler, Meg Allen, Liam Empney, Sam Dalpe, Ben Stone, and Ryan MacDonald, presented all of this to the volunteers at Pawfect Life on January 15th (coincidentally is Martin Luther King Jr’s birthday and fits in with the day of service).
“Our team is very proud of what they’ve accomplished and can’t wait to share it with the world!” said Butler. This is the team’s second year competing in DI. They will be competing in March in the regional DI competition in Shrewsbury, MA where they will be presenting their service learning project to a team of judges. Best of luck to the Iguanas!!