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Prominent pet charity moves to Brooklyn warehouse

by: COURTESY PONGO FUND - Larry Chusid, Executive Director and Founder of The Pongo Fund, which is preparing to open its new Brooklyn warehouse.Dogs and cats can also feel the strain of the recent recession, often receiving less food from cash-strapped owners.

But “The Pongo Fund”, established in Northeast Portland in 2009, seeks to remedy that by offering pet food assistance to needy families.

Weather damage from last winter has forced the Pongo Fund warehouse temporarily to suspend services while it relocates to larger quarters -- at 3632 S.E. 20th Avenue, in the Brooklyn neighborhood, where it will reopen on October 14th.

As part of the relocation, The Pongo fund has also launched a “kibble/cash” fund-raising campaign to replenish its exhausted inventory before the cool weather returns.

The Pongo Fund was founded by Larry Chusid to help struggling families keep their pets fed. Since the nonprofit organization purchases pet food in volume at huge discounts, monetary donations go farthest to help feed hungry pets around the region.

“Pets are family, too,” says Chusid. “Having to surrender a beloved pet to a shelter due to job loss or medical bills makes a sad situation even worse. Kibble from The Pongo Fund helps to keep families with pets intact during hard times.”

Since its inception, The Pongo Fund has donated nearly four million pet meals to pets in need. In preparation for the first-ever month-long suspension of services, The Pongo Fund donated an extra 50,000 pounds of kibble to many community partners, such as the Salvation Army, Neighborhood House, and Multnomah County Animal Services. These donations severely depleted their supplies, which the organization now seeks to restock to help family pets through the cold months.

The Pongo Fund is a volunteer-run organization, and is the only full-time resource focused on keeping cherished pets out of shelters simply because their families can't afford their food. Currently, over 100 social service organizations, emergency food agencies, shelters and rescues across Oregon and southwest Washington have received pet food assistance, and the number continues to grow. The Fund also has facilitated about a thousand spay/neuter surgeries, to help reduce over-crowding in animal shelter populations.

Pet owners in need can receive pet food from the new Portland warehouse in Brooklyn, or through other local social service organizations – including emergency food banks and food pantries that redistribute Pong Fund pet food to their clients, along with human food supplies.

To learn more about the organization, go online to: HYPERLINK "http://www.thepongofund.org" www.thepongofund.org – and concerned animal lovers can help the pet food bank by calling 503/939-7555, or mail a check to The Pongo Fund, P.O. Box 8244, Portland, OR 97207.