BREWSTER –It’s the height of tax season, and Massachusetts residents once again have the opportunity to donate to the Massachusetts Animal Fund (MAF).
The organization is dedicated to eradicating animal homelessness through spay and neuter programs.
“Right now there are 256 municipalities and about 30 veterinarians participating in the program statewide,” said Lauren Gilfeather, Coordinator for MAF. “It’s a safety net for people who are enrolled in state-funded assistance programs, and who may not be able to afford to have their pet spayed or neutered.”
The MAF was created in 2012 and is funded through the voluntary tax check-off on the Massachusetts resident income tax form as well as monetary donations.
With current funding levels, MAF can provide vouchers for about 1,100 surgeries annually.
However, with just a minimal donation amount, that number could increase dramatically.
“If every Massachusetts taxpayer donated just $1, we could help up to 40,000 animals a year,” Gilfeather said.
Local animal control officers may request vouchers for dogs and cats held in their respective municipal shelters, or on behalf of low-income residents or feral trappers who request them.
Since the first vouchers were disseminated in July 2014, more than 7,500 surgeries have been performed state-wide, nearly 800 by the Animal Rescue League (ARL) alone.
The ARL operates a facility in Brewster.