Saturday, July 12, 2014

Donate $1.00, Help Save a Life!

Marianne just donated to 'The Pet Emergency Medical Fund'. Give $1 to support Sam's Hope together! – One Today by Google

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

GenPhilly 4th Annual Pet-Tastic Pet Food and Toy Drive Happy Hour

Dear Pet Supporters:

Next month, GenPhilly, a network of young professionals who are dedicated to making Philadelphia a great place to grow up and grow old, is hosting our 4th Annual Pet-Tastic Pet Food and Toy Drive Happy Hour to support seniors who are pet owners.  This event will be held at the Field House across from the Reading Terminal Market on Wednesday, July 23 from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

In the past, this event has secured hundreds of donations for pets that belong to frail older adults who often struggle to support their animal companions.  Unfortunately, as seniors age, caring for a loved pet becomes more difficult and seniors struggling on fixed incomes too often sacrifice their well-being for their pets.  GenPhilly’s Pet-Tastic Happy Hour aims to address these challenges by giving pets and their owners a small gift that has a large impact. 

 Will you help low-income elderly people who have pets?

GenPhilly has selected Sam’s Hope, an organization dedicated to helping financially and health challenged people keep their companion animal, as this year’s recipient. Sam’s Hope has agreed to give the contributions from this event to its elderly participants.  I am enclosing a flyer to give you more information about the program and the organization that will benefit from it.

We hope GenPhilly can count on your support and would be most grateful if you could contribute pet food, supplies or gift cards to this effort!   If you have any questions, I can be reached at 215-765-9000, ext. 5072 or


Kate Clark
GenPhilly, Chair
Philadelphia Corporation for Aging, Planner for Policy & Program Development

Monday, July 7, 2014

Sam's Hope Marks First Year of Helping Pet Owners

Sam's Hope Marks First Year of Helping Pet Owners

By Rebecca Guterman Correspondent Bucks County Courier Times
After feeding more than 1,500 pets whose owners were in need and providing free veterinary care to 23 pets, fledgling nonprofit Sam’s Hope is proud of its first year.
Northampton resident Marianne Iaquinto started the federally registered charity to help low-income, disabled, elderly or sick owners of cats and dogs in Bucks, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties. She and about six other volunteers run Sam’s Hope.    

Sam’s Hope gave grants for 15 dogs and eight cats to receive free veterinary care in the past year. The grants fund up to $500 — or more, in extreme circumstances — and require the applicant to have demonstrated financial need, according to Iaquinto.

Shadow, and his mom, Liz
The charity helped Liz Hendley, of Warminster, by having a veterinarian come to her house to give shots to her 8-year-old Lab, Shadow, and clip the dog’s nails. The 125-pound dog was too heavy for her to take to the vet, Hendley said, and his nails were getting too long for him to walk comfortably. The vet also told Hendley that Shadow has arthritis and needs to go on a diet.

“It would hurt me to my heart if anything happens to him. It would also affect the little one (her Yorkshire terrier, ChiChi) because they have become such great buddies,” she said.

Another grant went to Coco, an emotional-support Chihuahua for Patricia Vertlieb, of Philadelphia. Vertlieb has secondary progressive multiple sclerosis and lives with her 34-year-old daughter, who is mildly intellectually challenged.

Iaquinto came to the rescue when Coco needed to go to the vet for a heart problem a year ago and Vertlieb didn’t think she could afford the transportation and treatment costs.

Coco, and his mom, Pat
“Without (Iaquinto’s) help we wouldn’t be able to … do anything. We’d be in debt up to our eyeballs because I don’t know where I’d get the money from. She has improved the quality of my life and my daughter’s life by keeping Coco healthy,” Vertlieb said.

Sam’s Hope has distributed more than 33,000 pounds of pet food since last July. The food is collected in donation boxes at area grocery stores. It’s distributed through three food pantries and to residents of an apartment complex that serves elderly, low-income people. Plus, there is direct delivery to individuals who are homebound.

Looking to the next year, Iaquinto said she hopes her group can serve twice as many pets as they did this year and add a spay-and-neuter grant program.

Iaquinto quit her job to start Sam’s Hope because of her love for her own Shih Tzu, Samantha, who passed away in 2012 after numerous health problems. Samantha is the Sam in the group’s name.

“We often thought if someone had less means than we did, they might have to surrender (the pet) to a shelter,” she said.

Nationally, about 7.6 million animals enter shelters each year; 2.7 million are adopted each year and another 2.7 million are euthanized, the ASPCA estimates.

More information on the charity:
Sams Hope