Community Foundation of New Jersey

Legacy of an Animal Lover: Great Companions Fund

February 7, 2013

A well-known yet anonymous quote offers, “The purity of a person’s heart can be quickly measured by how they regard animals.”

A Community Foundation fundholder certainly embraced this philosophy and, through a heartfelt bequest, is helping others experience the happiness animals can bring to the lives of people across the Garden State. The fundholder’s tireless devotion to animals will continue in perpetuity through a bequest in her will to establish the Great Companions Fund, an endowed fund that will provide grants to causes and organizations that care for and work with companion animals and wildlife across the state.

As friends of the fundholder can attest, the legacy of this loving animal owner, award-winning trainer and dedicated supporter of rescue groups is an immeasurable affection for animals.

As a close friend of the fundholder pointed out, “This person’s great passion was always animals. Truly, the donor had a magic touch with them and thankfully, the Community Foundation’s efforts will continue this good work.”

The Great Companions Fund made its first grants to animal friendly non-profits this spring.

Four organizations — The Bright and Beautiful Therapy Dogs, Friends of Randolph Animal Pound, Mount Pleasant Animal Shelter and The Raptor Trust — received contributions. Not only do they offer a safe haven for animals, including providing medical attention and shelter, but these grant recipients will also further the donor’s compassion by facilitating educational and therapeutic dog visits to people in schools, nursing homes and hospitals.

“This individual spent a good deal of time helping people better understand how animals can bring joy to our lives. The donor’s confidence in animals was, without a doubt, attributable to an assuredness in their ability if provided the right training and care,” said the fundholder’s attorney. “I introduced this animal lover to the Community Foundation because I knew it would identify organizations that would be consistent with this mission.”

Certainly, this trainer of and friend to creatures of all shapes and sizes recognized that the investment of time, love and compassion for animals never yields diminishing returns.