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Giving back

A Webster City Cub Scout shares part of his popcorn sales prize with a local organization

- Daily Freeman-Journal photo by Anne Blankenship
Eli Badenhorst cuddles Lovey the kitten after a recent interview with the Daily Freeman-Journal. Eli used part of his rewards from selling Cub Scout popcorn to make a donation to the Hamilton County Animal Advocates.

Eli Badenhorst has sold a lot of popcorn this fall during the annual Webster City Cub Scout popcorn sales. He’s had $3,055 in sales and that’s a lot of popcorn.

And as his sales have grown, so have the rewards for the scout.

But this year, Eli, a member of Den 583, decided he wanted to share part of his reward with a local organization that helps area animals.

He’s donating $100 of his prize earnings to Hamilton County Animal Advocates, a trap, neuter and release program. Shawna and Gerhard, Eli’s parents, are matching his donation and the president of HCAA, Monica Becker, is also reaching into her pocket to bring the total donation to $300.

“We’re so proud of him,” said Shawna Badenhorst. “I hope this inspires him to continue to think about helping others.

Shawna Badenhorst has been volunteering for about a year with Hamilton County Animal Advocates and was then asked to serve on the board of the organization. The family also has served as

“We had just lost our longtime orange tabby,” Shawna Badenhorst said. “We were kind of waiting for the right time to get another.”

The family adopted two orange tabbies, Thor and Loki, that have now made a home with the Badenhorsts. The cats joined the family just in time for Eli’s 7th birthday.

“So, we brought those babies home and since then, we’ve really enjoyed the moments that we can help out and volunteer. And it’s really near and dear to Eli’s heart,” she said.

Becker said the donation will help aid the group’s efforts.

“My gosh, this is just wonderful,” she said.

Becker brought along a small grey kitten named Lovey who came from a trap-neuter-return project the group was working on with a farm near Webster City.

“We’ve had her in our care since the end of July,” she said. “There were roughly 20 adult cats at the location. When there are kittens that are still young enough to tame, we try to re-home them. I think there were 12 kittens at this location.”

After treating the kittens for ringworm, fleas and testing for other conditions, and spaying and neutering, the kittens are ready for adoption.

“It takes about $100 to get a kitten ready for adoption,” she said. “So this donation is huge. It’s basically saving the life of a kitten and finding a good home for her.”

Before Eli left the interview, he took a few minutes to play with Lovey the kitten, now available for adoption. For more information the kitten or others available for adoption, contact HCAA at hamiltoncountyanimaladvocates@gmail.com or visit their Facebook page.

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