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Crossroads Campus in Germantown

At Crossroads Campus, there’s a healing bond between humans and animals.

Written By:  Jennifer Farrar

Photographers:  Nashville Lifestyles Staff

There is nothing quite like the love one can feel for a pet—and local nonprofit Crossroads Campus puts that theory in motion on a daily basis. The Germantown pet store not only offers treats and grooming services for pets but also provides programming that pairs animals with troubled kids and young adults for much-needed companionship—and life-skill learning.

“Our programs give at-risk young people the chance to care for homeless animals and to interact with individuals from throughout the community, including our volunteers, potential adopters, and store customers,” says Lisa Stetar, executive director of Crossroads. “These interactions benefit everyone involved and let compassion and mutual respect win out over stereotypes and misconceptions.”

One of their newer initiatives is the Crossroads Pets Shop & Adopt program, which helps people aged 18 through their early 20s overcome poverty and other adversities by teaching them crucial job skills. The young adults spend time interning at the store, where they learn the skills needed to run a retail operation and care for the sheltered animals that are up for adoption.

This past summer, the nonprofit started construction on a second-story residential space over the grooming services area that will be turned into dormitory-like affordable housing units for those who are interning through the program. Funded primarily through a grant from the Tennessee Housing Development Agency’s Housing Trust Fund, the space will be used by the interns, who must abide by certain rules and work with a social worker for anywhere from a few months up to two years.

This new investment rounds out the nonprofit’s other initiatives, including the Caring Connections program, which works in partnership with the foster care resource group Monroe Harding to offer human-animal interactions as a self-esteem-building and teaching tool. Not to mention the full-service pet store and grooming services—all sales from which go toward supporting the nonprofit’s mission to care for both people and pets.

707 Monroe St., 615-712-9758; crossroadscampus.org

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