On March 13, 2020 a State of Emergency was declared in New Hampshire as a way to lessen the impact of the COVID-19 virus. This meant events were cancelled, restaurants and businesses had to close their doors and move to a take out only model, and thousands of people moved from an office to working from home.
Social distancing was of course the right call, and it was necessary to protect the health and safety of the community. However with businesses and schools closing left and right we saw a rise in stress and fear throughout the nation. Now we are left with an indefinite time of social distancing, where we are no longer able to meet in groups, or sit down for lunch at our favorite restaurant. We are missing the definition of community we have become accustomed to and are surrounded with uncertainty which can be wildly scary.
Despite the uncertainty we are all faced with, the Humane Society for Greater Nashua has seen more resilience and grace than we could have ever expected. We have seen staff and volunteers continue to show up to the shelter day after day, and continue to provide our pets awaiting adoption with the most excellent care. Our staff and volunteers have found new and innovative ways to find our pets their forever homes, while still maintaining safe social distance. Through phone interviews, Facetime home visits, and parking lot meetups we have remained dedicated to our mission, which is to advocate for and enhance the lives of animals entrusted to our care while educating our community to strengthen the human animal bond.
The community of Greater Nashua, and even people beyond our city have risen up and shown copious amounts of support for our organization and our purpose. We have received so many encouraging messages on our social media channels, our emails, and over the phone. We’ve received donations safely sent by mail so we can continue to feed and care for our pets, and support those who experience a need for pet food. In addition, we have received countless messages from folks asking about becoming foster families for our pets, or offering to help in any way we need. To those who have called, emailed, or messaged us – we hear you and we are so touched by your selfless generosity.
One traditional definition of community is: a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common. But we have seen community redefined to people who, no matter the circumstance, find a way to relentlessly support one another. We could not be more grateful to the community we are surrounded by (even at a distance).
Although we do not know what the future holds, one thing we know for certain is we will be here. We will continue to care for the pets entrusted to our care, and support and educate our community. We will remain dedicated serving the Greater Nashua community however we are able. Though we might have to cancel some events, we will never cancel our mission. And although we may need to close our doors to the public, our hearts and our (metaphorical hands) remain wide open.