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Abilene animal shelter volunteer raises money for new washer



ABILENE TX – Jim Chandler is a retired veteran who volunteers his time washing and folding blankets at the Abilene animal shelter. After three months of work he realized the capacity and age of the machines they had just wasn’t enough to meet demand.

“Mandated 2 blankets per day per animal and this shelter holds, I think, a hundred animals.”

They were working upwards of 5 hours a day just on blankets and still not meeting the need.

Last October Chandler took it upon himself to start the Furry Friends Fundraiser. After raising $1,300 he was able to buy a secondhand industrial washing machine from Ingram Cleaners, that he installed himself.

“That never happens. Having somebody go through that whole process. Has the idea, knows the need, creates the fundraises, gets the machine then actually installs it themselves.” Says Abilene animal services interim director Mike Bricker.

With the machines inaugural wash behind it Chandler is looking ahead to the next project.

“We’ve got to enclose this (outdoor washing) area to make it usable in the bad weather, and the good. And I also want to get another drier” said Chandler.

He is looking to raise another $5,000 dollars for materials, and plans to do the construction and installation work himself.

“Like I said, if you want something done, do it yourself” said Chandler.

Though it may seem Chandler does the work of a whole team, Volunteers are still greatly in need according to Bricker.

“Whether you have a marketing background and you wanna help us in that way, if you are great with social media you wanna help us out in that way. If you want to just come a cuddle puppies and kittens we have jobs for you.”