Katy Lausten's inspiration for the challenge comes from her orange tabby cat, which she adopted from the Animal Welfare League in Chicago Ridge, Illinois. Katy uses her $1,000—along with $100 donated by her classmates in nursing school—to help the shelter.
Katy finds the group's wish list online and decides to buy every item on it! She donates necessities including food, bleach, soap, kitty litter and animal heating pads. She gives the remaining cash to the shelter so they can buy more supplies as they need them.
While she says some people judge her for helping animals instead of people, Katy is glad she helped the shelter. "By helping the Animal Welfare League, I am helping people because animals spread joy and they spread love," she says. "There's just nothing more important than that in my opinion."
Katy loved every minute of her challenge. "I was so excited to be able to do something for this animal shelter. It felt completely wonderful," she says. "I will never forget this experience."