About Us

Gimme Shelter is a response to animal abuse and abandonment in southern Hamden during 2016. Hamden & North Haven residents Steffy Tirado, Dian Viesslemann,  Jerry Dananberg and Lenny Young were all previous acquaintances through the Hamden Dog Park. They believe that the silent majority of pet-people are caring souls and will step up when given a platform. That platform came on January 16th when the following article appeared in the Post-Chronicle:

Personal Banker and walking companion Cheryl Castellano was brought on board to oversee money transactions and Gimme Shelter was born on January 19th of 2017.

While registering the group at Town Clerk Vera Morrison’s office, a quick trip upstairs to Finance Director Salvatore DeCola brought to light that an Animal Control Gift Fund was already established. That is when Gimme Shelter became a ‘catalyst organization’. With little to no overhead, the money raised went directly into the Animal Control Gift Fund. In December of 2017, our donations helped inspire the Town of Hamden to create an Animal Shelter Gift Fund for the sole purpose of creating a new or Regional Animal Shelter. The fund has a “virtual lock” on it so those donated funds may not be reappropriated, all proceeds now get deposited there.

Our all-volunteer group plans and executes fundraisers to raise awareness & funds for the Animal Shelter Gift Fund. Hamden resident and Graphic Artist Sandy Chen (Chen Designs) donated her time and talents preparing the group’s logo. Local artist Terry DaGradi volunteered her photography skills and the fundraising started!