Betty White Challenge helps animals in Vancouver, BC

January 17 would have been Betty White’s 100th birthday.

Betty White may not have reached her 100th birthday, but she would probably be happy with this birthday present.

Around the world, people donate to animal welfare organizations through the Betty White Challenge; the viral campaign encourages people to donate to organizations that help and care for animals in honor of the late actress Betty White, who was famous for their advocacy.

January 17 would have been his 100th birthday.

In Vancouver, that means a big bump for organizations that weren’t anticipating or expecting donations. The BC SPCA, which is funded entirely by donations, started seeing money in Betty White’s name a few days earlier, with around $20,000 donated on the morning of her birthday. By lunchtime, that had soared to over $166,000.

“This woman left such a legacy,” says Eileen Drever of the BC SPCA. “The number of animals she has helped, even in her passing, is incredible.”

For them, the money will be allocated where it is needed, because the BC SPCA houses animals, runs education and rehabilitation programs, has a fund for emergency medical procedures and investigates the cruelty to animals across the province.

“You can be disillusioned sometimes, but when you see something like this happen it’s amazing,” says Drever, who has spent much of his 42-year career with the BC SPCA working on investigations into the animal cruelty.

Vancouver-specific organizations are also seeing a surge in donations.

“Last year on this date we received $150 in donations all day. Compared to this year at 9:50 a.m. we received $590,” Chantelle Archambault of the Vancouver Humane Society wrote in an email to Vancouver is awesome. “Five of those people explicitly mentioned Betty White.”

The same goes for the Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association (VOKRA), where by mid-morning donations were already well above normal.

“I did some quick math and so far we’ve seen an increase of over 700% in the number of people donating in the last two days compared to last year,” the president wrote. by VOKRA, Tasha Bukovnik. “Obviously Betty has touched the hearts of many people with her animal advocacy and it’s heartwarming to see her legacy continue.”

Drever is grateful for the donations and happy to see so many animal welfare organizations succeed in White’s name.

“I would like to know how much money has been raised in Betty’s name in North America,” she says.

She notes that while this is an unexpected helping hand, financially, she hopes this kind of giving will continue in the future.

“I would really like this to continue,” Drever says. “This will keep Betty White’s memory alive and continue to help animals in North America. It’s truly heartwarming.”

“It’s a shame she wasn’t there to see what she did,” she adds.

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