VOCAL Holds First Annual Fundraiser

Those faces, lit with innocence and inquiry, speak in a silent, passionate voice, expressing a distant turmoil, a painful longing. In some disturbing duality, the eyes of these animals convey wonderful adoration and terrible longing. These are Marion County’s very own: Abandoned, neglected, abused, lost.  And their population grows – unabated.

This tale woven together in tragedy can be averted. Voices of Change Animal League – a newly launched, comprehensive nonprofit organization that targets finding solutions to the area’s expanding pet population – seeks to speak for those without a voice. VOCAL aims to spread its message: The pain must end; the rescue must commence.

VOCAL’s first annual fundraiser was held Nov. 21. Called FurBall 2015, the event at the Country Club of Ocala raised more than $20,000. That’s net, said VOCAL president and co-founder, Linda Norman. “We did well for our first time out. People are becoming aware of who we are. They are getting to know us.”

The theme of the night was “A Night in Vegas.” Tickets cost $125. Proceeds are going directly to build a low-cost spay and neuter clinic in Marion County. Donated items were raffled at the event.

Kwikturn Media produced a video for VOCAL describing the organization’s goals and development, which was shown at the event. Kwikturn Media is a partner with VOCAL. “The video was really, really good,” Norman said. “We had people in tears.”

More than 100 people attended the Nov. 21 formal occasion, playing at casino tables and at slot machines. Several even attempted to match the pulsating rhythms of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It,” Wild Cherry’s “Play That Funky Music” and other songs – all to varying degrees of success.

Norman said she’s grateful for the public’s response and the help donors provided. Dozens of local businesses donated items or services. Panther Print Solutions in Ocala donated invitations and printed materials for VOCAL.

Looking to The Future

VOCAL is looking to spread its mission to wider audiences

Norman said organizers expect to change the theme of the FurBall every year. Organizers will be examining ways to spread the message to wider audiences and educating the public about the importance of responsible pet care and treatment and how to find pet services.

If you live in the Ocala or Marion County area, call 352-289-0800 for more information or send us a message through our contact form.