In December, Stephanie Lindquist-Johnson a 43 year old mother from Roeland Park, Kansas, placed a post on Nextdoor, a neighborhood social media site, seeking unwanted foam coolers, the type often used to ship food products like meat.
“The response was incredible,” said Lindquist-Johnson, a web designer for Waddell & Reed, an asset management company in Overland Park. People from around northeast Johnson County were soon dropping off coolers at her house.
Then, with her sons help, Stephanie began to turn them into something kind and useful during the winter – shelters for feral cats or any outdoor animal small enough to fit.
The inspiration for the move was a sense of empathy toward these animals out in the cold, and a word from her soon-to-be-6-year-old son.
“I feel so sorry for all the animals out there. It’s been so cold,” Lindquist-Johnson said.
Phillip, who attends a local Catholic School loves animals and volunteers with his mum at Another Chance Cat Rescue where they help the animals. “He’s dying to go back to the cat rescue and help,” Lindquist-Johnson said.
Making the shelters is rather simple; the cooler is glued into a single peice and a small port hole is cut in the side. After that it’s all tightly covered in heavy-duty trash bags and secured with duct-tape. Then the interior is stuffed with straw or hay and the animal itself will provide the required heat to keep it warm.
These tiny portable shelters are then offered out to members of her community free of charge and nearly all of the 33 she built have been picked up to be put out around the various neighbourhoods.
“I’m kind of addicted to making them and we’re having fun with it,” she said. “I’ll keep making them as long as I don’t go into terrible debt.”
So far she has even had a little financial help with the supplies from some people who read her posts online. “One person donated $40 and another $50,” Lindquist-Johnson said.
You might think people would question encouraging wild animals to be around, but so far the response has been fairly positive, including one from Natosha Halling of Upper Fairway, who commented, “Stephanie = A cat’s best friend!”
Jose Ramirez of Crestview wrote: “Atta girl!!! Great and wonderful contribution to nature. You have a good heart. The world needs more like you. You are wonderful and kind.”
Jennifer Franken of Roeland Park commented, “Love this! Love that animals are being helped and the landfills aren’t being filled with Styrofoam!”
This kindness and the appreciation for it is what makes this your Good News Story of the Day, which you can find here.
Though, truthfully, helping our natural friends in town with their own homes only helps to keep them seeking shelter in OUR homes. Keeping raccoons out of the attic sounds like a good idea to us.
Story and Image from MSN.