CLEVELAND — A local cartoonist has been drawing nearly all her life, but now her work is inspiring people to adopt animals from shelters all over the country.
Jenny Campbell spoke to Spectrum News at Rescue Village, a humane animal shelter in northeast Ohio. She has been drawing the animals there to help find them a home.
"We got this massive response, people donating $5, if that’s all they had," she said.
Campbell is one of only 50 female nationally syndicated cartoonists in the country. She’s been drawing ever since she was a child.
"I’ve illustrated about 25 children’s books. Those are the jobs that feed my mortgage," she said.
But what people don’t know is that she’s also saving animals with her drawings.
"Drawing for Rescue Village for the last 22-plus years, most of it is pro bono. They did pay me for the mural, but most of it is pro bono. That is the work that feeds my soul," she said.
Campbell was always drawing animals, but it wasn’t until Director of Rescue Village, Kenneth Clarke, discovered her work and realized it could go far beyond the paper.
"I had heard that Jenny was a cartoonist, and I wanted to learn more about that," he said.
They worked together to figure out how to save more animals.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals states 920,000 shelter animals are euthanized each year — a number they’re trying to minimize starting right here at home.
That’s why Campbell created a book full of drawings dating back 20 years, meant to inspire people to adopt.
"There are a lot of reasons this book is important to Rescue Village. I mean, in the last five years alone, we have adopted more than 9,000 animals," he said. "So if you go back and compound that over time, well this book is full of some of the things that helped us get all those animals adopted and raise the money so we could take care of those animals."
Campbell said it’s her love for animals that keeps her going, and when she found out she was saving their lives, she knew there was no turning back.
"And you know what, I was hooked from that point on. I thought, OK, well I’m just going to keep drawing for these guys until the wheels fall of this bus," Campbell said.