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The 2019 Animal Heroes

The Cynthia Matthews Parker Family Foundation

Established originally as The Matthews Family Foundation, the Foundation has been supporting HSSC, and the animals it serves, since 2013. The Foundation was established by Cynthia Parker Matthews whose parents, Arthur and Helen, founded the company today known as Parker-Hannifin Corporation in 1918 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Foundation and it’s trustees, Cynthia’s children Marci Matthews, Parker Matthews, and Streeter Matthews, and grandchild Mason Matthews, view philanthropy as a vehicle for transforming the Northeast Ohio region and making an impact on issues including children’s healthcare, education, victim support, youth development, veterans’ needs, and, of course, animal welfare.

Following the passing of their beloved mother in 2017, the Foundation’s trustees changed its name to the Cynthia Parker Matthews Family Foundation and reached out to the Humane Society of Summit County to make a truly transformational gift. Together, HSSC and the Foundation decided to create a new position of Foster Care Coordinator to provide training, support, and animal care supplies for volunteers who serve as foster families to better serve our most vulnerable animals: kittens and puppies under 8 weeks of age and dogs undergoing extensive recovery from life-threatening illness or injury. Through this position, the number of foster families and animals served has grown, along with the retention and engagement of foster families. As a direct result, HSSC provides lifesaving services for more animals, especially those who are most vulnerable.

We are so grateful to the Cynthia Parker Matthews Family Foundation for enriching the services we provide and for making our community safer for very young and critically ill and injured animals.


ForeverLawn NEO

ForeverLawn is a national premium artificial grass company based in Louisville, Ohio. With over 10 years’ experience in the synthetic turf industry, ForeverLawn NEO is a leader for its integrity, quality, and innovation. Their product K9Grass® is designed specifically for dogs to provide exceptional drainage and antimicrobial protection for a cleaner, safer, better smelling environment for pets. A company with strong community connections, ForeverLawn NEO and HSSC connected through Bark in the Park 2018 and a partnership was quickly formed.

As a first project, ForeverLawn NEO offered to donate K9Grass for an enclosed dog run, about 1000 square feet, in HSSC’s outdoor canine enrichment area. The surface of the run was transformed from crushed limestone that was dusty and had standing water issues to a lush, comfortable area that dogs, staff, and volunteers enjoy for hours every day. Following a grant-funded project to create a yard specially designed for dog playgroups, HSSC approached our friends at ForeverLawn NEO to cover the area – roughly 5000 square feet – in K9Grass. ForeverLawn NEO decided to make these dreams come true and in the summer 2019 The Play Yard opened. Today, nearly all of HSSC’s rescued dogs participate in daily playgroups providing them with social, physical, and mental stimulation to enrich their lives and become ready for life in their new homes.

We are so thankful to ForeverLawn NEO for creating beautiful spaces at HSSC that any dog would be lucky to enjoy!

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For questions regarding the 19th Annual Pawsibility Ball, please fill out this form and we will reply as soon as possible.


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