The Latest Headlines from CAART

By: From 13 News/ CAART
By: From 13 News/ CAART

Quite a bit happened at the last meeting for the Capitol Area Animal Response Team, first with new volunteers to help.

Six new volunteers have joined CAART! Welcome: Wendy, Bill, Steve, Leslie, Rachel and Tabitha – we are so happy to have you on board.

The next Volunteer Orientation will be held on July 19th at the Topeka and Shawnee County Library at 7:00 p.m. If you still haven’t completed the Application and other forms, or if you have any friends that would like to join us, please tell them about it or come yourself.

We are looking for someone or several someones to be a CAART Event Coordinator / Fundraiser. There are several animal and emergency response events in Topeka every year. An Event Coordinator would monitor these and find out what we need to do in order to schedule a CAART presence at local events, make a reservation, figure out supplies needed, etc. We also would love someone who has fundraising experience to coordinate and schedule fundraising events for CAART. A few of you showed some interest in this at the meeting, so please contact Julie at to make a start. Julie already has some names and contact numbers to get you started. Also, if anyone knows of an animal lover that may not be a CAART volunteer but that has some of these skills, please contact them and see if they’d like to help out.

There is also a need for a Public Education Coordinator to set up seminars and other events to educate the public on the need for disaster preparation for their families and pets. This could involve helping to design brochures and other educational materials and the use of social and public media. Please contact Julie if you know of anyone who might enjoy this challenge.

CAART currently has 9 animals being sheltered, 2 of which belong to an amazing woman with 10 children who successfully escaped a bad domestic situation and is getting her life back together at the Rescue Mission. When CAART shelters animals for people in these types of situations, we vaccinate and/or spay/neuter as needed so they can go to other shelters and foster homes.

In the last 2 months, CAART has received 5 requests for help and responded to 4: Kennet, MO; Reading, KS; Joplin, MO and Pierre, SD. Julie and Phil thanked the Responders that deployed to these events and praised our professionalism, dedication and passion. Several of us spoke about our experiences, and all agreed that we would follow Phil and Julie just about anywhere. One thing that became evident in these last 2 months is that we need more certified Disaster Responders among our ranks, so please pull the “Required Courses” document from the back of your CAART Volunteer Packets and get started on the online FEMA courses!

They are not difficult, and our Education Coordinator, Jane Alford, will be happy to help you get started. Just email her at and she’ll give you some short cuts and tips for making these courses go quickly. Once you get the FEMA courses done, you just need to take the Emergency Sheltering course, or take part in the Shawnee County Disaster Encampment in October (more about that below).

Mark your calendars for October 14, 15 & 16 at Tecumseh Park for a taste of a “real” disaster response. If you participate, you will get your Emergency Responder Certificate. It’s interesting, it’s fun, and you will be ready to deploy and enjoy the same sense of accomplishment some of us did last month. The weather should be good, so plan on camping out if you can. Our Shawnee County Emergency Manager, Dave Sterbenz, has “teased” us with the promise of a “comfort trailer”, with real toilets and showers and even laundry facilities!

Just because Julie hasn’t been on television “advertising” CAART, that doesn’t mean that we don’t still need donations! If you would, cut and paste the following blurb into an email to your friends who love animals and their people:

Shawnee County’s own CAART has been in the news lately, responding to several natural disasters, including the Joplin, MO tornado. CAART is a non-profit organization with several components:

Pet Food Pantry, which has supplied 73,000 lbs of pet food to over 500 families with over 2000 pets since January

Emergency Sheltering, which takes in the pets of people temporarily living in a non-pet zone, such as a women’s shelter, Rescue Mission, hospital, etc.

Public Education regarding disaster readiness for family and pets

Disaster response, such as our deployments to Reading, KS and Joplin, MO

The PET FOOD PANTRY and Emergency Sheltering operations rely on donations, which may be made by check to: The Topeka Community Foundation, 5431 SW 29th #300, Topeka, KS 66614

On your check, please indicate “Pet Food Pantry”, “Emergency Sheltering” (for vaccinations, spaying and neutering), or “Warehouse Rent” (our lease is up in September, and we need $875 per month to maintain our location).

The next meeting will be on Wednesday, July 27th at 7:00 p.m. at Prince of Peace Church, 37th and Wanamaker. The church isn’t confirmed, but I’m pretty sure it will be there. If not, I’ll let everyone know. I know some of you can never come to an evening meeting in the middle of the week, but that’s the best time for Julie, so you’ll just have to rely on my Newsletters…sorry. Those of you who couldn’t make it tonight, try to come in July if you can.

Don’t forget to check out our website:
And our Facebook page: search CAART

631 SW Commerce Pl. Topeka, Kansas 66615 phone: 785-272-6397 fax: 785-272-1363 email:
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