The Greg Fund made fresh grants to three longtime partner organizations during the second quarter of 2020, for new initiatives to promote human health while making the world a better place for animals of many species.
1 – People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
a – The Fund partnered with PETA to present the 2020 Gregory J. Reiter Award, given annually since 2016 to an individual or group for inspiring dedication to animals. This June we presented the award virtually, to Julia Novak for 10 years of volunteer work with PETA’s Norfolk, Virginia-based Community Animal Project, which serves underprivileged communities in southeastern Virginia and northeastern North Carolina. One of Julia’s many contributions was fostering a rescued dog named Itchy (pictured in the award plaque above), who Greg and I adopted in 2013.
b – PETA’s Community Animal Project scored a particularly important victory in April, when the Virginia governor signed an anti-tethering law that prohibits keeping dogs tethered in extreme weather conditions. The law then became effective this month. PETA has testified and lobbied since 2016 to promote Virginia legislation protecting backyard dogs, and this Fund has supported many of its associated public education initiatives.
2 – Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)
For the second consecutive year, the Fund is a sponsor of The Exam Room™. Focusing on vegan nutrition and medical news, this program began as a podcast and has now expanded to daily Monday-Friday Facebook Live broadcasts that are also published on Youtube.
The Fund’s sponsored episodes since May 2020 have included: From CNN Anchor to Plant-Based Advocate: Jane Velez Mitchell; Does Your Blood Type Put You At Risk For COVID-19?; and Change What You Eat, and Change Your Risk of Having a Stroke.
3 – Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary
In May, I participated in Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary’s 17th annual 5k Run for the Animals — this year held as a virtual event. Ten generous individuals donated to my fundraiser, and the Greg Fund then matched these contributions to support the care of over 200 rescued farm animals as well as wildlife.
As a regular volunteer at Poolesville, Maryland-based Poplar Spring, I was proud of the sanctuary team for raising a record sum despite the many challenges all of us have faced this year.
In closing, a heartfelt thank you:
— To generous Q1-2 2020 contributors to this Fund — including Jeana Curro, Rob Haworth, Nancy Hughitt, Keith Kemplin, Adam Kobor, Ilona Lantos, Caryn Laurion, Joshua Levine, Kelly Molino, and Michael Nardacci.
— To those who donated to Poplar Spring Animal Sanctuary for a Fund match — including Helena Antonowitsch, Anthony Bellotti, Noelle Callahan, Alka Chandna, David Cherry, Nancy Ertel, Rob Haworth, Stephanie Jones, Christine Kestner and Malita Kim-Schultz .
— To everyone on the Community Foundation of Frederick County, Maryland team that administers this Fund.