Lending a helping hand (WITH GALLERY)

Published 12:00 am Saturday, September 9, 2023

Jordan’s Way founder Kris Rotonda gives instructions to staff and volunteers at the Lawrence County Animal Shelter, during a challenge as part of a fundraising livestream on Tuesday. (The Ironton Tribune | Heath Harrison)

National group hosts livestream fundraiser for animal shelter

A raucous sound could be heard from the rear of the building as you entered the Lawrence County Animal Shelter on Tuesday.

There was no emergency with the animals, but, instead, it was the sound of very enthusiastic workers.

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They were taking part in challenges for a special livestream event for the shelter, hosted by Kris Rotonda, of Jordan’s Way, a national shelter movement group.

The event was livestreamed for three hours on Facebook and Rotonda sat in the kennels with the dogs and made the pitch for donations.

When he wasn’t doing that, he was getting shelter workers and volunteers to partake in various challenges if donations made a certain threshold.

These could take the form of Ironton Mayor Samuel Cramblit II, who dropped by to support the effort, and deputy dog warden Adam Meyers slapping each other with tortilla shells, or Meyers getting a cold shower in an ice bucket challenge.

Ironton Mayor Sam Cramblit II dumps an ice bucket over deputy dog warden Adam Meyers during a fundraiser for the Lawrence County Animal Shelter on Tuesday. (The Ironton Tribune | Heath Harrison)

Kris Rotonda, founder of Jordan’s Way, livestreams with his new friend, Buster, from a kennel at the Lawrence County Animal Shelter on Tuesday, as a part of a fundraising event for the shelter. (The Ironton Tribune | Heath Harrison)

At one point, Rotonda gave viewers the option to follow up Meyers’ dunking by urging them to donate $50 within a few minutes to have shelter director Denise Paulus take the bucket challenge in place of a second round for Meyers.
Rotonda himself threw in to make this goal.

According to a news release, Rotonda founded Jordan’s Way after his best friend, Jordan, passed away. Jordan was a shelter dog who spent the first 3.5 years of her life being overlooked in a shelter. Rotonda spent 11 years with her before she died of cancer. After she passed, he says he made it his mission “to honor her life by helping raise awareness for overlooked shelter animals and helping them get the attention they deserve.”

Paulus said it was a major coup for the shelter to get Rotonda to do the event, with them being one of 16 shelters across the country to be selected for a fundraising event.

“All funds donated will go through the Humane Society,” Paulus said, noting they would help with spay and neuter efforts and for medical needs of animals there.

With a half hour left in the event, she said donations stood at $2,325, and, at the close of the event, they were just shy of $3,000.

Paulus noted that those who still wanted to contribute could do so for seven days through the fundraiser, which could be found on both the shelter’s page, as well as Jordan’s Way’s site.