Kern County Animal Services needs help to win a national contest that has a $350-thousand prize. Director Nick Cullen says his agency is a wildcard contestant in the semi final round for the grant from Petco. “We are the only representative in the state of California in the wildcard round…and our idea can be chosen if the community votes for us and thinks our idea is good.” That idea is the LION program, short for Lerdo Inmate Orphan Nursery, which trains female inmates to care for tiny kittens that will be put down without 24-hour care, which Cullen says also gives the woman a sense of purpose and job skills for when they get out. There’s a link on the Kern County Animal Services Facebook page, which you can find right here.

Suzanne Grant