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Sunday, October 4, 2015

A Sewing Project Dedicated to Helping Animals

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- Two young girls spent their summer working on a special sewing project to help raise money for animals in need.
Gianna, left, and Kira Aldinger hold a puppy while visiting the North Shore Animal League after donating more than $200 from selling sewn bandannas and beds for dogs. (Courtesy of Janet Aldinger)
Pouches for Pooches was created by Kira, 10, and Gianna Aldinger, 9, with the help of their grandmother.

"They wanted to learn how to sew and they are very into animals," said Great Kills resident Janet Aldinger, referring to her granddaughters. "They wanted to learn how to make stuff for the animals."

The two girls began sewing bandannas and beds for dogs at the beginning of July. They sold the items to family and friends, and by summer's end, they had raised more than $200, which they recently donated to the North Shore Animal League.

"With the money we gave the people at the shelter, they can give the animals food, treats and beds so they can have a better life," said Gianna, who lives in Tottenville.

The North Shore Animal League was so thankful for the donation, the girls were invited for a tour, during which they were able to play with the animals. They also received medals, books and magnets as gifts of gratitude.

"North Shore Animal League America couldn't be happier knowing the next generation is embracing our mission to rescue, nurture, adopt and educate," said Joanne Yohannan, senior vice president of operations of North Shore Animal League America. "We are deeply grateful to Gianna and Kira Aldinger, and their parents, for their very generous donation."

Now that the girls are back in school, it is more difficult for them to make the bandannas and beds since they have less free time.

"They already want to continue doing it next summer," Aldinger said. "I have a separate room for the sewing machine and materials. They want to start right when school is out and summer starts."

Since their initial donation, Pouches for Pooches has sold another $150 in products, and there are plans to donate to the Animal League again.

"I saw my grandma sew and thought to make clothes for our dogs and then for the shelter dogs," said Kira, formerly of Annadale, who now lives in Metuchen, N.J.

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