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Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Pongo Fund

I'm loving all these heart felt stories about people and the love for dogs!  Enjoy reading about this amazing fund, that will help animals who live in unfortunate circumstances eat!
When Larry Chusid was driving through Portland one November evening in 2007, he saw two dogs and four men camped under a bridge. He stopped to see how they were. The men said they were fine, spending Thanksgiving at a shelter eating turkey with all the trimmings. They needed nothing for themselves, but their dogs were hungry.


“They told me that homeless shelters usually didn’t have pet food,” Chusid told the Oregonian. But the dogs needed to eat, so they all shared the same meals. “It wasn’t healthy for any of them, but that’s just how it was.”
The next day, Chusid returned with some high-quality pet food, and the Pongo Fund—a nonprofit organization that provides pet food to people living in Portland’s homeless, transitional, and low-income communities—was born.

Now the Pongo Fund is set to open Portland’s first pet food bank. “This will be a gift for the entire community, providing quality dog and cat food to hungry animals whose families are financially unable to continue feeding their own beloved pets. It will also be America’s largest pet food bank committed to providing food of only the highest quality,” says Chusid in a press release.



Today, two years since he started, Chusid estimates that he’s given out 100,000 meals, bringing food and supplies to homeless camps and providing food in bulk to social service agencies. He buys the food at a deep discount, mainly from Canidae, a California company that sells high-end, all-natural pet food.


Chusid has also become a regular at Potluck in the Park, which serves free meals on Sundays at downtown 
Portland’s O’Bryant Square. He says that his mission is keeping families together. “Because when food is scarce meals are frequently shared between people and their pets, leaving neither with a full stomach. And a meal for each can be the difference between life and death,” says Chusid. “So that one bowl of kibble … it really ends up feeding an entire family.”

For more information, visit ThePongoFund.org

Click Here to see how you can help out!
You can also read about The Pongo Fund on Oregonlive.com
Story written by Sarah Hughes @ Tails Magazine

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