June 21, 2023
Student-led club supports local animal shelter
Upper St. Clair High School’s Saving Animals Club recently raised monetary and in-kind donations totaling more than $1,000 to benefit the South Hills Pet Rescue.
With nearly 130 members, the Saving Animals Club was founded during the 2022-23 school year by rising senior Julia Cedar. Anne-Marie Ganster, world language teacher, serves as the club’s sponsor.
“When looking at the list of clubs at Upper St. Clair High School, I was surprised to see that there was no club to help animals,” Julia said. “With my lifelong love and passion for animals, and having two dogs at home, I decided to create a club that would benefit the shelters and rescues.”
More than 20 students assisted with the 2022-23 fundraising efforts.
“In addition to receiving the donations, we also made blankets and dog toys to donate,” Julia said. “There was an outpouring amount of support from teachers, staff, classmates and our club sponsor, Ms. Ganster.”
Club members selected South Hills Pet Rescue, a local organization that rescues, rehabilitates, and rehomes dogs of all breeds, with all needs. Located in South Park, the rescue houses an average of 50 rescue dogs at all times.
“A great thing about this rescue is that people can adopt dogs from here. South Hills Pet Rescue takes in about 400-500 dogs a year with an adoption rate of 98%,” Julia said. “We are trying to help the dogs at South Hills Pet Rescue be as comfortable as possible until their adoption into a new loving home.”
Julia and members of the Saving Animals Club have big plans for the 2023-24 school year. They hope to double their donation total.
“Next school year, we plan on hosting another fundraiser, making more dog toys and other items to donate, having a baked goods and dog treat sale, and possibly volunteering at a local shelter,” she said. “Our club also plans to help other local shelters. I am hoping to also get additional support with fundraising in the USC community outside of the school district.”