Article: Local nonprofit gets assistance from students
Note: This article appeared in the Lincoln Parish Journal on Jan. 31, 2023.
Written by: Brennan Hillard
4 Paws Rescue, a nonprofit animal shelter in Ruston, received a helping hand thanks to a group of Louisiana Tech students.
Heather Nutt, Alyssa McReynolds, Cameron Hunter, Kourtney Frost, Savion Collins and Ella Avery decided to go above and beyond what was required of them for their marketing class’s group project.
After being assigned a project in their digital and content marketing class that required them to audit a local business’s online presence, the group of students decided to put their efforts towards helping an often overlooked nonprofit, 4 Paws Rescue.
According to their mission statement, “4 Paws is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the well-being of stray, abandoned and neglected animals in Lincoln Parish,” and has been doing so for 17 years and also provides “community education, strongly advocating spaying and neutering, heartworm prevention and responsible pet ownership.”
“We chose them because they don’t receive as much help as the other nonprofits in the area and they were on the verge of closing so they really, really needed any help they could get,” said Nutt, a senior majoring in marketing.
According to Sue Martin, Director of 4 Paws, 4 Paws has an operating cost of $9,000 a month, which now wholly comes from donations.
“We get no state, local or city funding, none,” Martin said. “We are providing the shelter that they are mandated by the state to provide, so it really makes it extra hard to understand why they are doing what they are doing.”
The students focused their efforts on overhauling 4 Paws website and reaching out to local businesses to increase the monthly donations coming into 4 Paws.
“We set up a corporate sponsorship program, to get regular donations coming in from local businesses, we made their regular community donations on their websites more functional,” Nutt said
According to Martin, public outreach and donations have increased since the website’s revamping, “We’re able to put our fundraisers on there and even sell tickets, it’s just been a blessing, they have really done a great job on that and we use it every day,” she said.
Thanks to the group, 4 Paws now has multiple ways for the public to easily monetarily show support.
“Our one that we’re pushing the most is called ACH, it’s where you transfer a monthly donation on the 19 of the month from your checking account to our operating account. The reason we’re pushing it is because you don’t have to write a check monthly, it is automatically withdrawn from your account to our operating account on the 19,” said Martin.
The public also has the option to sponsor a kennel for $50 a month, which takes care of three to four dogs, or they can donate food, toys, blankets or other supplies.
The public can also visit 4 Paws Dog Park, which Martin referred to as an “unknown gem in Ruston,” and pay the $5 entrance fee.
More information on how to get involved can be found at www.4Pawsrescueinc.org.