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Young at Heart Pet Rescue Wins Toyota Minivan

Animal lovers shared their love for Lake Zurich, Palatine-based senior pet rescue.

Young at Heart Pet Rescue is a winner in  Toyota’s 100 Cars for Good program, a major philanthropic initiative in which the automaker is giving 100 cars to 100 organizations over the course of 100 days.

“It proves the power of social networking at its very best,” said Dawn Kemper, executive director of YAHPR. “The only collaboration was between friends and group sharing. It’s the power of social networking between animal lovers.”

Although Toyota does not release the number of votes, YAHPR received at least 50 percent of the vote on June 16, from among five finalists, making the organization the winner for Day 34 of the contest.

“We were overjoyed. We’re still kind of floored. We are a small organization,” Kemper said.

YAHPR will receive a Toyota Sienna minivan, which will be used to transport dogs and cats out of animal shelters, to and from the vet, and to and from adoption events. The minivan also will be used to transport pet food donations to the St. Francis de Sales food pantry and the Palatine Township food pantry.

“We donated 50,000 pounds of pet food to food pantries last year. It’s a lot of work, but it supports our mission because it keeps those families’ pets out of shelters because they can’t afford to feed them,” Kemper said.

YAHPR is the only pet rescue in the Chicago metropolitan area that specializes in rescue and rehoming of senior dogs and cats that might otherwise be euthanized because of their age. 

YAHPR runs a weekly adoption feature in Lake Zurich and Palatine Patch each Friday.

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