SPRINGFIELD — Dakin Humane Society is accepting nominations from the public for its Dakin Humane Awards through Monday, July 29. Nominees should be people who go out of their way to care for animals in need, volunteer to help animals, or have provided significant public service or shown courage in a crisis. The awards will be presented at Dakin’s Mutts & Mimosas fundraising event in Whately on Sunday, Sept. 22.
Five awards will be bestowed. The Frances M. Wells Award is given to an individual recognized for notable contributions to the health and welfare of animals. The Youth Award honors a hero, age 16 or younger, whose extraordinary care and compassion makes a difference in the life of an animal, and makes the world a kinder and gentler place. The Champion Award is given to a public servant who makes life better for tens of thousands of animals and people in their community. This award recognizes their dedication and compassion on behalf of animals and people in need. The Richard and Nathalie Woodbury Philanthropy Award pays homage to an individual who displays a remarkable sense of stewardship in sharing time, talent, and financial resources to improve the lives of animals and people who love them. Finally, the Animal Hero Award recognizes an exceptional animal and handler (when applicable) whose valor and extraordinary devotion to people proved lifesaving in disastrous or challenging heath circumstances.
“In recognition of Dakin’s 50th anniversary, we wanted to bring back the Humane Awards, which haven’t been held in several years,” said Stacey Price, Dakin’s director of Development and Marketing. “Part of celebrating Dakin’s successful history is acknowledging the amazing partnership we have with people throughout our community who do extraordinary things to help animals and people. We are very happy to be able to honor them through the Humane Awards Program.”
Nominations are being accepted online only at bit.ly/2NOcgps. Mail-in nominations will not be accepted. Nominees should be residents of Central or Western Mass. or Northern Conn.
After July 29, nominations will be reviewed by Dakin Humane Society’s directors and staff, and finalists will be selected. After that, a panel of independent judges will select the winners by voting in each category. The decisions will be based solely on the content of the nomination forms. Nominators are asked to provide thoughtful, concise, and specific examples of their nominees’ efforts on behalf of animals.
Each finalist, plus a guest, will be given a complimentary invitation to attend the awards ceremony on Sept. 22. Winners will be announced at that time.