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Meet the Winners of the 2012 Mutt-i-grees "America Adopts" PSA Contest

January 2013
Announcing the Mutt-i-grees® “America Adopts” PSA 2nd Chance Contest Winners

This year, schools participated in a nationwide animal life-saving competition by submitting public service announcements to the 2nd Annual Mutt-i-grees “America Adopts” PSA Contest. After the top winners were chosen, thanks to the Mutt-i-grees “America Adopts” Second Chance PSA Contest, every school that submitted had a second chance at winning! The top three PSAs were chosen by popular vote, with the video that got the most plays winning the Contest.

The votes are in, and the 1st place prize, a $1,500 educational grant, goes to Horizons Elementary School in Appleton, WI. The 2nd place grant ($1,000) is being awarded to Saint Martin de Porres Academy in New Haven, CT. Finally, a $500 grant for 3rd place goes to Lakeview Middle School in Wintergarden, FL.

The PSA Contest is a nationwide initiative to raise awareness of the availability and desirability of Mutt-i-grees – a term describing any dog, cat, puppy or kitten awaiting adoption at a shelter or rescue group. It reflects the essence of the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum, a unique approach to teaching children social and emotional skills as well as highlighting the individual characteristics and needs of Mutt-i-grees.

Congratulations to the winners, and thanks to all who participated!

Horizons Elementary School

Saint Martin de Porres Academy

Lakeview Middle School

December 2012
Congratulations to the winning schools in the 2012 Mutt-i-grees “America Adopts” PSA Contest.

The Grand Prize goes to Carrie Palmer Weber Middle School in Port Washington, NY. Their winning video, “Everybody Needs a Friend,” has earned their school a $10,000 educational grant, as well as a visit from Cesar Millan, the renowned dog behavior expert, whose Foundation is a longstanding supporter of the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum.

Regional winners each receive a $1,500 educational grant. Those schools included South Side Junior High School in Bee Branch, AR; Fenton Avenue Charter School in Lake View Terrace, CA, and Little Blue Elementary School in Independence, MO.

The PSA Contest reflects the essence of the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum, which is an innovative program that builds on the affinity between children and animals, providing a unique context to teach compassion, empathy and social responsibility. Developed by the Yale School of the 21st Century in collaboration with The Pet Savers Foundation, and funded by the Millan Foundation, the Curriculum highlights the unique characteristics and desirability of Mutt-i-grees.

To find out more about the prize-winning public service announcements, read their stories below!

'Everybody Needs a Friend'

Most of the nine Carrie Palmer Weber Middle School 7thgraders who won this year’s Mutt-i-grees® “America Adopts” PSA Contest Grand Prize didn’t even know each other a year ago. Technology teachers Danny Ciccone and Tommy Stepanek had become very popular among a number of their former students, several of whom had begun visiting them outside of class time. The teachers laugh when telling the story, explaining that they expected the students to be productive if they were going to come to their classrooms. “If you’re going to be here, “ they’d told them, “you’re going to do work.”...

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'We Did It!'

For the students at South Side Junior High School in Bee Branch, AR, who have just been pronounced regional winners of the Mutt-i-grees® “America Adopts” PSA (public service announcement) contest, the concept of the “Mutt-i-gree” is certainly nothing new. Young people in Bee Branch have been following the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum for three years now. Mutt-i-grees “America Adopts” PSA Contest participants from all across the country created PSAs that would raise awareness about Mutt-i-grees and encourage people to adopt rather than support pet stores or other entities that sacrifice animal welfare for the sake of profit...

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'Adopt a Champion Mutt-i-gree'

According to one proud teacher, Barbara Aragón, the unique and innovative Mutt-i-grees® Curriculum has had an enormous positive impact on Fenton Avenue Charter School in Lake View Terrace, CA since it was first implemented three years ago. The latest positive result of the Curriculum for her school, where she serves as lead Mutt-i-grees teacher, is that the school’s PSA (public service announcement) has won a $1,500 grant as a regional winner of this year’s Mutt-i-grees “America Adopts” PSA Contest. This year, Mutt-i-grees “America Adopts” PSA Contest participants from all across the country created PSAs that would raise awareness about Mutt-i-grees and encouraging people to adopt rather than purchase pets...

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'Adoption'

When helping to supervise Little Blue Elementary School students in the making of their Mutt-i-grees® “America Adopts” PSA Contest video, Jennifer Younghans, coordinator for the Kids’ Safari Before and After School Program, says, “I wanted to go into it very scripted.” Laughing, she admits that she quickly realized, “Yeah, this isn’t going to work.”...

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