Students for the Protection of Animals: advocating and fighting for animal rights and awareness at West


Above, the SFPA Board poses for a photo during their meeting. The club meets in Mr. Broccolo’s room, their sponsor. (Photo courtesy of Annie Cleaver).

At West, there are many opportunities to serve the community. From Key Club to Interact, many traditional service and volunteer opportunities are offered to the student body. However, though not as obvious, Glenbard West also offers a club to give back to and fight for the rights of animals through SFPA, or the Students for the Protection of Animals club. 

Speaking with club sponsor, Mr. Broccolo, he shared that it is important to “get students more actively involved in GBW” and to avoid student attitudes of “getting to school at 7:35 a.m. and leaving at 2:35 p.m.” Encouraging and fostering involvement is integral, especially at Glenbard West. 

Speaking towards the message of the club, Mr. Broccolo stated that it is mainly in hopes of “raising awareness of animal rights and things like that.” Similarly, the publicity position holder on the club’s board, Annie Cleaver, senior, spoke about how the lab focuses on “promot[ing] animals’ rights in the community and abroad,” and how SFPA not only contains itself to the campus, but onward to the direct community. 

The club has large hopes and a detailed mission on what they want to accomplish this year. The other publicity head, Bridget McBride, junior, shared that in general, they hope to “prevent animal abuse, keep animals safe and comfortable within shelters, discourage animal testing, and help animals find a home.”

Co-President Caroline Casey, senior, also added that “[they] hope to have fundraisers throughout the year and to be able to help out at shelters as a group.” 

As the club meets on the second Friday of each month, the club and club’s board aspire to fix the problem of lack of volunteering. Taylor Huff, senior and the other President of SFPA, shares that “[they] have had a ton of trouble in the past trying to volunteer.” With this new school year, she hopes that “[they] don’t only volunteer once, but [they] want to be able to volunteer multiple times and show that [their] club is respectful so [they] will have the opportunity to volunteer more in the future.” 

Furthermore, in order to get their mission and message out there, Annie touched upon how the club is planning on using their newly introduced social media page, which can be found on Instagram (@students4animals). 

In their final remarks, Caroline Casey paralleled Mr. Broccolo’s point on keeping kids involved. “We hope to be a club that students can be passionate about, even just talking about pets. We really take members’ suggestions into account and we hope to make it what the club wants to get out of it.” 

SFPA is truly a unique club that offers a specific interest for those wanting to help with animal awareness and volunteering. If you or someone you know is interested in this topic, make sure to get involved in SFPA by joining them every second Friday of the month!