While most families have been busy evacuating to higher ground in anticipation of Hurricane Florence, Samira Davis, a brand-new real estate agent with Wilmington, N.C.-based Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage who had her very first day on the job this week, has been scrambling to organize a new initiative to house some of the most vulnerable victims of hurricanes: abandoned dogs and cats. To make her vision a reality, Davis is partnering with Julie Lamacchia, president of Pender County Humane Society, a no-kill shelter in Burgaw, N.C.
Before and during hurricanes, most area animal shelters are overwhelmed and at capacity, so many pets are abandoned as their owners seek refuge out-of-town or at area shelters not equipped to handle pets. Davis’ initiative, Sea Coast Pet Sanctuary, is a place of last resort for cats and dogs with nowhere else to go during natural disasters like Hurricane Florence.
To get the program off the ground, Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage donated $1,000 in seed money. Wade and Ashley Wilson, agents with Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage, donated the use of a family-owned, 33,000-square-foot warehouse building in Castle Hayne to house the pets. Davis and Lamacchia are asking people to donate pet crates, blankets and dog food. All donations can be delivered to the Sea Coast Pet Sanctuary warehouse at 4101 Blue Clay Road in Castle Hayne. Volunteers will be manning the warehouse 24/7 during and after the storm.
“Coldwell Banker has a long tradition of supporting pets and pet adoption,” says Tim Milam, president of Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage. “Pets are cherished members of our families and a very important part of our home life. In 2015, Coldwell Banker launched its Homes for Dogs Project with a goal of finding homes for 25,000 abandoned dogs each year. Locally, we have been very supportive of pet adoption with our own projects. Samira’s Sea Coast Pet Sanctuary is a much-needed solution to a tragic problem and we’re honored to support her vision.”
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