Lend a helping paw: Service opportunities in the Lewisburg community

Bel Carden, Contributing Writer

One of the University’s core beliefs is the importance of serving the surrounding Lewisburg community. The University’s mission statement explains this value as an aspiration “to educate our students to serve the common good and to promote justice in ways sensitive to the moral and ethical dimensions of life.”


To further promote these values, here are some meaningful, nearby organizations you may not know about that are looking for volunteers!


T&D’s Cats of the World, Wild Animal Refuge


T&D’s Cats of the World provides a home and safe haven for nearly 300 abused animals from private individuals, government agencies, zoos, and other refugee organizations. Although the majority of the animals are felines (40 varying from lions, tigers, cougars, bobcats, servals, and lynx), there are also bears, fox, deer, coyotes, wolf-dogs, raccoons, primates and many more creatures who have found their way to T&D’s.


Visitors are welcome to see the animals during the summer. Despite being licensed by the state and the federal government to house and display the wildlife, T&D receives no government funding.


“The care of the animals is made possible in part by private contributions. T&D’s has no paid employees and only a handful of volunteers to help give guided tours, prepare animal food, help with construction and maintenance, and other tasks,” T&D representative Jennifer said.


Therefore, donations and volunteering are key to the organization’s success. Some of the tasks that volunteers are given include setting up different areas within the refuge center.


If you are interested in volunteering at T&D’s Cats of the World or would like more information on the organization, please contact them at the email address [email protected], or call 570-837-3377.


Far Point Animal Rescue


Another local organization involved with protecting and giving a home to mistreated animals is Far Point Animal Rescue.

Far Point Animal Rescue takes care of a variety of animals including cats, dogs, and horses.


Director of Far Point Animal Rescue Marlana Flaherty explained that the mission of the organization is to “take in animals who have been abused, rehabilitate them and take care of them.”


Flaherty’s parents founded the organization in 1996. “My parents saw an advertisement in the newspaper for a blind mare who had just given birth. These people had impregnated this blind mare and were going to kill her if someone didn’t take her. So guess who decided to take her in? My parents. And that’s what started Far Point,” Flaherty said.


Another important aspect of Far Point’s philosophy is the healing power of connecting with animals. A wide variety of people volunteer at the organization, such as highschoolers, rehabilitation programs, individuals with disabilities, and college students.


Flaherty firmly believes that “many look at animals as not less than humans, they just speak a different language.” Far Point Animal Rescue can be reached through email at [email protected], or by calling 570-847-5514.


St. Paul’s United Methodist Church


St. Paul’s United Methodist Church is dedicated to serving the people of Lewisburg through their service projects and opportunities. A key aspect of their mission statement is “Servant Leadership.” Therefore, many of their service projects focus on the needs of the people in the community.


The church was founded in 1806 by a group of families in the Lewisburg and Montandon area who followed the teachings of the Evangelical Church. Some examples of the work St. Paul’s does are blanket drives, Operation Christmas Child, and Easter egg hunts.

St. Paul’s can be contacted via their website: https://www.stpaulslewisburg.org/contact.html or by phone: 570-524-5011.


The University’s Civic Engagement Office is a great resource for discovering opportunities to help the local community. The office strongly believes in the relationship between education and social service. Furthermore, the University supports the notion of students learning through real-world experiences within the community.


For more information on these service projects contact the Civic Engagement Office through their email [email protected], by phone at 570-577-3973, or stop by 119 Bertrand Library to visit their office.

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