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Dog foster volunteer helps combat homeless animal issue in Kansas City

KC Pet Project seeing increase in volunteers
Posted at 2:00 PM, May 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-07 18:01:42-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — KC Pet Project saw 11,000 animals in its shelters last year. This year, that number is down, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

The decrease has a lot to do with volunteer foster families in the community who are stepping up to take in animals.

Kelsey Nelson has been a volunteer pet foster mom with KC Pet Project for two years and has fostered 30 dogs.

"She's just one of those people that you ask her to do something and she's like, sure, how do I make it happen," said Tori Fugate, chief communications officer at KC Pet Project.

Being a foster volunteer is not Nelson's only job. She is a mom, a wife and a school counselor at Troost Elementary School.

"Fostering is like my passion project," Nelson said.

Balancing working from home, taking care of her family and helping to reduce the number of homeless pets in Kansas City is no easy task, especially since KC Pet Project now operates virtually.

Fugate told 41 Action News that it’s volunteers like Nelson who have made pet adoptions during COVID-19 possible.

"She's just been a huge help. And also getting all of our bios and photos for the website so that we can continue to market these animals that are all living in foster homes so that they can find forever homes," Fugate said.

The pandemic sparked more than 800 foster applicants throughout the Kansas City community to help the organization, which Nelson says is something that gives her hope.

"For me that’s the silver living of COVID is that our homeless pets are finding homes that they would have not otherwise found," Nelson said.

If you are interested in fostering a pet through KC Pet Project, click here.

During the pandemic, 41 Action News wants to spotlight people, organizations and companies helping the community. To share these stories, use #WeSeeYouKSHB on social media.