Fifty dog and cat shelters across the United States are competing for more than $500,000 in grants through the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ 2012 ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge.
The shelters will attempt to adopt out at least 300 more cats and dogs during August, September and October 2012 than they did during the same period in 2011. The shelter that increases its year-over-year adoptions by the greatest number over the three months will win the $100,000 grand prize.
Starting today and continuing into the weekend, the contestants will hold kickoff events featuring promotions and discounts on adoption fees.
“We’ve been watching as the contestants gear up for events and get the most wonderful animals ready for adoption,” said Bert Troughton, vice president of community outreach for the ASPCA. “In this competition, everybody wins–especially the animals!”
The contestants and their supporters are promoting the competition through Facebook and the Twitter hashtag #100KChallenge.
In addition to the grand prize, the ASPCA will award $25,000 to the second-place finisher and $25,000 to the contestant that does the best at engaging its community members, the ASPCA reported. Organizations that perform the best in each division will be eligible for prizes of $5,000 to $40,000.
In total, more than $500,000 will be awarded to participating dog and cat shelters.
The competitors include:
• Kern County Animal Control in Bakersfield, Calif.
• Animal Outreach of the Mother Lode in Diamond Springs, Calif.
• Escondido Humane Society in Escondido, Calif.
• Marin Humane Society in Novato, Calif.
• Animal Friends Rescue Project in Pacific Grove, Calif.
• San Bernardino County Animal Care & Control in San Bernardino, Calif.
• Animal Friends of the Valleys in Wildomar, Calif.
• Canyon County Animal Shelter in Caldwell, Idaho.
• Nevada Humane Society in Reno, Nev.
• Greenhill Humane Society in Eugene, Ore.
• Humane Society of Central Washington in Yakima, Wash.
• Bangor Humane Society in Bangor, Maine.
• Baltimore Animal Rescue and Care Shelter in Baltimore.
• Talbot Humane in Easton, Md.
• Montgomery County Humane Society in Rockville, Md.
• Eleventh Hour Rescue in Randolph, N.J.
• Humane League of Lancaster County in Lancaster, Pa.
• Pennsylvania SPCA in Philadelphia.
• Animal Friends, Inc. in Pittsburgh.
• Animal Rescue League Shelter and Wildlife Center in Pittsburgh.
• Last Chance Ranch, Inc. in Quakertown, Pa.
• Central Brevard Humane Society in Cocoa, Fla.
• Broward County Animal Care and Adoption Center in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
• Flagler Humane Society in Palm Coast, Fla.
• Seminole County Animal Services in Sanford, Fla.
• Big Dog Ranch Rescue in Wellington, Fla.
• The Humane Society of Charlotte in Charlotte, N.C.
• Oconee County Humane Society Inc. in Seneca, S.C.
• Young-Williams Animal Center in Knoxville, Tenn.
• Portsmouth Humane Society in Portsmouth, Va.
South Central Division
• Arizona Animal Welfare League & SPCA in Phoenix.
• HALO Animal Rescue in Phoenix.
• Humane Society of Southern Arizona in Tucson, Ariz.
• Santa Fe Animal Shelter & Humane Society in Santa Fe, N.M.
• Tulsa Animal Welfare in Tulsa, Okla.
• Beaumont Animal Services in Beaumont, Texas.
• Denton Animal Shelter Foundation in Denton, Texas.
• BARC Animal Shelter & Adoptions in Houston.
• City of San Antonio Animal Care Services in San Antonio.
North Central Division
• Winnebago County Animal Services in Rockford, Ill.
• City of Bloomington Animal Care and Control in Bloomington, Ind.
• Heartland SPCA in Merriam, Kan.
• Friends for the Dearborn Animal Shelter in Dearborn, Mich.
• Kent County Animal Shelter in Grand Rapids, Mich.
• Ashtabula County Animal Protective League in Ashtabula, Ohio.
• Humane Society of Greater Dayton in Dayton, Ohio.
• SICSA in Kettering, Ohio.
• Toledo Area Humane Society in Maumee, Ohio
• Medina County SPCA in Medina, Ohio
• Bay Area Humane Society in Green Bay, Wis.
A list of scheduled events being hosted by the shelters can be found here.