Putting their skilled labor and time to good use, inmates from the Suffolk County Corrections Department are helping improve the grounds at Kent Animal Shelter in Calverton.
The handful of inmates have been helping renovate the shelter over the past month under supervision of Sergeant Jeff Campo and Phil Cantora of the Suffolk County Corrections Department.
Among their main duties have been: tree removal, installing fencing, roof repair and cleaning. They’ve also painted and stained animal kennels, which makes the shelter a more enjoyable place to visit, said Pam Green the executive director of the shelter.
“They are great, really a nice group of guys and they work like machines,” she said. “They all have different skills and it has been a godsend to us.”
Ms. Green said shelter volunteers secured a donation of 1,000 gallons of epoxy paint from Home Depot, which inmates are using on kennel walls and gates.
“I think it really has helped to get some of the animals adopted,” she said. “We’ve had some amazing adoptions since. A dog went home a couple of days ago that had been here for five years.”
Sergeant Campo contacted the shelter to see if it would be interested in applying for help from the skilled inmates, Ms. Green said.
The inmate volunteers will continue to work every Monday and Tuesday throughout the summer, she said.
The Corrections Department program gives inmates an opportunity to perform community service while also providing skilled labor that might otherwise be out of reach for community organizations. In the past, inmate volunteers have also helped in renovating Brendan House in Riverhead.