Code 3 Associates, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization specializing in animal rescue and recovery in disaster areas, has formed a partnership with Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series team co-owned by three-time and reigning series champion Tony Stewart and Gene Haas.
Made possible by a benefactor with interests in animal-related causes, Code 3 Associates will be the primary sponsor of SHR’s No. 39 team and driver Ryan Newman throughout the Hollywood Casino 400 race weekend Oct. 17-21 at Kansas Speedway in Kansas City, Kan. Code 3 Associates joins the U.S. Army, Quicken Loans, WIX Filters, Aspen Dental, Outback Steakhouse, Tornados and Bass Pro Shops as primary sponsors of the No. 39 team.
"“We’re thrilled to partner with Stewart-Haas Racing and Ryan Newman who are recognized for their leadership and performance on and off the track,” said Eric Bagdikian, president, Code 3 Associates. “Both drivers are generous supporters of animal rescue and welfare, with each of their foundations specializing in this cause. This initiative with Stewart-Haas Racing will greatly raise the profile of our collective mission, which is to provide animal rescue and recovery in the immediate aftermath of a disaster.”"
Formed in 1985, Colorado-based Code 3 Associates is a national response team that at the request of local government officials provides animal rescue and recovery during any kind of disaster. The organization has evolved from one unpaid volunteer to at least 75 professional responders around the country, which includes animal welfare, law enforcement, fire, EMS and veterinary specialists from the United States and Canada. While its focus is animals and their owners, Code 3 Associates trains its responders to the standards of human rescue, and Code 3 Associates also provides training to conduct thorough investigations into animal welfare, all of which is accredited by Colorado State University (CSU) and the CSU Veterinary Teaching Hospital.
"“Animal welfare is something that is very important to me and my wife, Krissie,” said Newman, who through his Ryan Newman Foundation educates and encourages people to spay/neuter their pets and to adopt dogs and cats from animal shelters. “We’re in the process of opening up an animal rescue facility in North Carolina. We know firsthand the costs involved and how important it is to create awareness of what you’re doing so you can not only see your project come to fruition, but to sustain it. We truly appreciate what Code 3 Associates is about and we’re proud to have them on our racecar and a part of Stewart-Haas Racing.”"
When the No. 39 Code 3 Associates Chevrolet hits the track at Kansas, the group’s logo and slogan, “Riders On The Storm Animal Rescue Team,” will appear familiar to many. When a devastating tornado struck nearby Joplin, Mo., just a few weeks before last year’s June race at Kansas, Code 3 Associates arrived shortly thereafter. With its mobile command center known as BART (Big Animal Rescue Truck) on the scene, teams from Code 3 Associates assisted in the search and recovery of animal victims displaced by the tornado. Code 3 Associates remained in Joplin before being called to Pierre, N.D., where severe flooding from the Missouri River necessitated the specialty work of Code 3 Associates for nearly two months.
"“We’re honored to have Code 3 Associates join Stewart-Haas Racing,” added Stewart, whose Tony Stewart Foundation is dedicated to the protection of various animal species. “Whenever there’s a disaster, everyone wants to help, and it’s nice to know there’s an organization out there that takes care of a sometimes overlooked but very important family member – your pet. Taking care of animals has always been important to me, and when we started our Foundation, we made animal welfare a priority. To be able to promote the work of Code 3 Associates so that it can do even more work for people and their pets is very satisfying.”"
Those wanting to learn more about Code 3 Associates and what they can do to support its mission can do so by visiting www.Code3Associates.org.