‘Faith restored’: Saving Grace animal rescue receives a $100,000 donation from an anonymous donor

The organization says the funds will go towards their own veterinary facility

By Krista Sylvester | May 25, 2022 |5:00 am

An anonymous donor penned this cheque for $100,000 to Saving Grace Animal Society last week.

Photo: Submitted

It was an unexpected — and unprecedented — surprise for Erin Michelle Deems when she opened up the cheque to see the number of zeros after the one. 

The Saving Grace Animal Society executive director couldn’t believe her eyes when the Alix, Alta., rescue received a $100,000 donation from an anonymous donor — the largest single donation in the organization’s history. 

“Faith restored,” she said after receiving the cheque, adding it couldn’t have come at a better time. 

“It’s really exciting for us because we have been struggling financially with all of the major medical cases that have really put a financial burden on our organization using valuable resources right now.” 

The funds are already spoken for 

The funds will go towards the rescue’s under-construction veterinary clinic, which will have the biggest impact on the organization that sits two hours away from the closest vet. 

“To walk across the parking lot seems like a crazy dream, but we’re now seeing that come to reality where we’ll be able to get medical care right next door to our current building,” Deems adds. 

The group hopes the vet clinic will be complete by the end of the year, though Deems admits that might be overly optimistic. 

That said, the funds will go towards buying some of the equipment the facility will need to do its own spays, neuters, and regular care. 

A rollercoaster of emotions 

Deems was thrilled when the organization received the donation but that joy was short-lived — soon after she got a call about 23 abandoned dogs and another dog that was suffering from such a bad arm infection, he started to chew it off. 

The night before, she was woken in the middle of the night to help a dog that was suffering from multiple bullet wounds. 

“It is really hard to take that moment back and enjoy the moments that we can because rescue there is such a high demand right now. You’re just constantly on the go, so it’s definitely an emotional roller coaster,” Deems explains. 

“Every single day, you never know what to expect, but knowing that we’re helping as many as we absolutely can keeps us going.” 

Every dollar counts 

A donation this big is life-changing, Deems says, but every donation matters no matter how big or small. 

“This $100,000 is absolutely incredible,” she says, adding they are very thankful for whoever signed the cheque. 

That said, if every person that followed the charity donated even just $5 each, it would make just as big of an impact on the organization that is already struggling just to get through each day. 

“We’re definitely still bursting at the seams… we are beyond maximum capacity.” 

Saving Grace is always looking for potential adopters and people who can help foster animals. 

“We’re reaching out constantly to try and gather more foster homes to be able to sleep our animals because the demand is just not going down and the adoptions, unfortunately, aren’t picking up,” Deems adds. 

“It’s really hard to keep up, but we’re doing our absolute best.”

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Krista Sylvester

Managing Editor at Calgary Citizen

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