Community Coming to Aid of Animal Shelter

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HONESDALE -- An animal shelter in Wayne County is always in need of a helping hand from the public.

A recent project wound up costing the organization tens of thousands of dollars it didn't plan on spending.

Dessin Animal Shelter bought a building on Main Street in Honesdale last year.

On the first floor is a thrift shop which helps the shelter but it's what's above the store that presented the shelter with unforeseen and costly problems.

While these dogs bark away at the Dessin Animal Shelter near Honesdale and the cats enjoy their new, spacious room.

Shoppers were looking through the sales racks at the Cat's Pajamas, a store run by the shelter, for the shelter.

"We looked at that thrift shop to boost some dollars to then turn back over into shelter," said the shelter's executive director Dara Coslett Granza.

But along with the building came a lot more than the folks at the shelter ever expected.

There was a bad roof and much-needed masonry work had to be done in order to make the 2nd and 3rd floors available to rent out.

"Some growing pains, that's right. We have some issues we've figured out how to correct. Working with buildings it's very expensive," said shelter board president Dick Forman.

On a tight budget, pretty much all the money the Dessin Animal Shelter takes in goes to the animals.

When the organization bought the new building and realized it needed $100,000 of work, realized it didn't have the money so it reached out to the community.

"We're struggling, we're fortunate we've put the word out and seen an outpouring of support," said Coslett Granza.

The shelter hopes the donations keep coming. It relies on them to employ a full-time humane officer. The folks at Dessin Animal Shelter said in the end, buying the building on Main Street was the best decision a folks we spoke with tend to agree.

"I think it's wonderful the community comes together for such a great cause," said Lindsay Hibbs of Hawley.

The Dessin Animal Shelter is the only shelter in Wayne County and has been around for nearly 50 years.

All the work needed on the building drained the organization's funds but thanks to the community, the folks with Dessin said they're on their way back to good financial footing.

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