Animal welfare charity Battersea Dogs & Cats Home has been awarded £200,000 in funding from players of People's Postcode Lottery.
The funding will help fund Battersea's vital community engagement work, including offering free dog microchipping, responsible dog ownership workshops and open days around London. The money will also pay for two new full-time members of staff, as well as buy brand new uniforms and a fully liveried van for the Community Engagement team.
Sharon Sealey, Community Engagement Manager at Battersea, said, "This incredible funding will help us speak to more adults, children and young people about responsible dog ownership, as well as offering microchipping and advice within the community. Dog microchipping means a lost dog can be quickly reunited with its owner, greatly reducing the number of stray dogs coming into Battersea. We're very grateful to players of People's Postcode Lottery for helping us make a real difference to dogs."
Battersea's Community Engagement team delivers workshops and events across London and the South East, working with local communities, schools, youth groups and young offenders institutes. As well as addressing issues such as the use of dogs as weapons and dog overbreeding, the team educate dog owners on how to keep their pet safe and healthy. Last year 65 per cent of all dogs arriving at Battersea were not microchipped, a simple measure that could save a lot of distress for owners and their dogs.
Nicola Clapham from Leatherhead lost her Shar Pei Humphrey one evening in March. Nicola said, "I went to feed him and he was gone. After a very sleepless night, I phoned the microchip agency again and found out his microchip had been scanned at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home. If it hadn't been for the chip, I don't know what might have happened to him. I got Humphrey microchipped eight years ago, as a puppy. I'm so pleased that I did – I would recommend it to every dog owner."