Unleash the Future: At more than 50% of goal, Humane Society of Southeast Missouri seeks support to finish shelter campaign.

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Saturday, May 1, 2021 ~ Updated 1:27 PM

Humane Society of Southeast Missouri leadership and a furry friend gather inside the new building set for completion later this year. Left to Right: Tracy Poston, Executive Director; Charlotte Craig, Board President; Cindy Lange, Community Outreach and Development Coordinator; John Thompson, Steering Committee Member.

After 40 years in a building that was falling apart, the Humane Society of Southeast Missouri (HSSEMO) launched a capital campaign to raise $3.7 million toward a larger facility.

Over $2 million has been raised to help future adopted pets, and the facility is under roof with plans to open this fall.

The Humane Society of Southeast Missouri’s No. 1 goal is to continue to be a “no-kill shelter,” and the new 12,000 square foot facility, located next to the current facility, is essential to making this goal a reality.

HSSEMO helps more than 3,000 animals stay off the streets each year with plans to extend services in the new space.

“As we move forward, more emphasis will be put on pet retention through pet training classes, spay and neuter assistance, guidance to pet-friendly rental properties and general pet care information,” Cindy L. Lange, community outreach and development coordinator said.

The center will feature separate ventilation systems to help control the spread of disease, larger kennels, surfaces that can be maintained and cleaned, group housing for cats allowing for interaction, drainage to keep the pets warm and dry, and education programs.

“All the hard work and changes over the years have been worth it to arrive where we are now,” Charlotte Craig, president of the board of directors, said.

Mahatma Gandhi, who led India to its independence, once stated: “ … the greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

John M. Thompson said before becoming a volunteer he’s not sure he would have understood what Gandhi meant. “But having now seen firsthand how important HSSEMO is, not only to the animals it fosters but for the communities and the citizens of the region, his quote is quite clear to me,” he said.

For more information or to donate, visit

semopets.org or call 573-334-5837.