Bandit Lends a Helping Hand…or Should we Say a "HOPING PAW"
at the Helen Woodward annual Telethon


SAN DIEGO, CA - The Helen Woodward Animal Center held their annual HOPE Telethon on July 27th, 2008. This year, Bandit made time in his busy schedule to make sure he was there, able to give a “helping paw” by answering phones at this year’s telethon.  “For the past several years,” stated Mark Shaffer, “Bandit and I have not been able to volunteer at this telethon due to a scheduling conflict.”  But when Shaffer found out that this year’s telethon was going to be held on a day he and Bandit were available  to volunteer on the phone bank, he contacted John Van Zante, the Public Relations Manager of the Helen Woodward Animal Center (HWAC) and told him that Bandit and he would be there this year, to man the phones.  Shaffer added, “Bandit and I are huge supporters of the HWAC and would do anything we can to help this organization out and be there when we can to volunteer our time.” 

The annual “HOPE” Telethon is based on the cornerstones of Helen Woodward Animal Center’s mission. HOPE stand for:

·         Helping people with special challenges

·         Orphaned cats and dogs finding safe haven

·         Parents and children learning about sharing the earth

·         Educating shelters about “the business of saving lives”

The annual HOPE Telethon featured information about the Center’s two original programs… Pet Adoption and Humane Education …as well as:

AniMeals for the pets of homebound elderly and disabled people, Pet Encounter Therapy for people in institutions, Therapeutic horseback Riding for those facing mental and physical challenges.

And HWAC’s fully equipped Equine Hospital

Also featured during the show were baby kittens from HWAC’s Foster Care program, a student rider from the Therapeutic Riding program, and a retired nun who receives “AniMeals” from HWAC allowing her to keep and provide nutrition for her two dogs. 

During this 4 hour broadcast, the Helen Woodward Animal Center’s Telethon raised nearly $200,000!!!   

On-air hosts included some of San Diego’s best-known animal lovers.

  • Bridget Naso, Lena’ Lewis, and Dave Scott from KUSI-TV
  • Dave Mason, morning host on “The Walrus” – 105.7
  • KSON radio’s Tori Peck from the “Cliff and Company” morning show
  • And HWAC’s Trisha St. George and John Van Zante

This was the first year Bandit volunteered on the phone bank.  Bandit and Mark look forward to supporting the Helen Woodward Animal Center and other animal shelters in the San Diego area in the future.  

Animal lovers can still drop off their HOPE Telethon donations at Helen Woodward Animal Center at 6461 El Apajo Road in Rancho Santa Fe. Donations to the Center can also be made here.

For more information about the Center’s programs and services benefiting animals and people in-need visit the Center or call 858-756-4117 or visit the HWAC web site


Click on image above to watch TV coverage (edited)