Resue Help

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by reneeearle, Jul 13, 2005.

  1. reneeearle

    reneeearle Well-Known Member

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    I HAVE HAD A LONG TIME DREAM TO START UP AN ANIMAL RESUE, BUT LACK THE MONEY, THE BARNS, AND THE EXTRA FENCING NEEDED. DO YOU KNOW OF ANYWHERE THAT I CAN GET DONATIONS, BOTH MONETARY AND BUILDING MATERIAL? PLEASE EMAIL ME WITH ANY INFO. THANKS, RENEE EARLE
    reneeearle@yahoo.com
     
  2. rambler

    rambler Well-Known Member Supporter

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    This will sound negative, but - I fear you would not have the funds to care for the animals either. Might not take any better care of the critters than the current owners do. Having the facilities is good, but there is so much day-to-day expense in caring for animals that were not well cared for. Need a pretty good sized budget for that as well.

    --->Paul
     

  3. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    Perhaps you could contact an established breed rescue group and volenteer?

    I believe most of them park their dogs in peoples homes, a dog here and a dog or two there. It would be a great way to learn the ropes.

    It would also help you to make the contacts that you will need. Remember, a charitable donation is tax deductable, but you need a mentor on fund-raising, and FIRST you must be ALREADY established as tax-exempt.

    The breed rescue people woulkd know more, and could teach you what you need to know.
     
  4. trappmountain

    trappmountain Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Terri. It would also be a great place to start. Take in a few foster animals, get to know the people at the rescue, ask questions. Mention your dream to them. They would know what you need to do to get started, and where to find funds. They may even help out in case they have an overload and need to move some animals out. It certainly wouldn't hurt.
     
  5. MorrisonCorner

    MorrisonCorner Mansfield, VT for 200 yrs

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    Speaking as someone who IS an animal rescue... rambler is right on the money. Infrastructure is nothing compared to our day to day expenses. We joke that we're putting two vet's first borne children through college... but we're probably not too far off the mark! Rescue animals arrive loaded with parasites, usually with some sort of seeping wound, broken bones, or other expensive to treat injury... no innoculations... the list is endless.

    We're very popular with local vets :-(

    Then there is the little matter of insurance. Depending on what type of animals you plan on rescuing, and how you plan on rehoming them, their either is expensive insurance to protect you... or there is nothing available. In our case they simply don't write policies to cover what we do. So if we place an animal with a family and that animal hurts their kid, and they decide to sue everyone in sight, this is my house we're talking about here. My savings. We're utterly hanging out in the wind. This makes us more than a little cautious and seemingly very picky about how we place an animal, but if it is my house on the line, you can bet I'm going to err on the side of caution and then some.

    Lastly, there is the issue of local zoning and local, state, or federal, licensing requirements. You can "have pets" but once you get into rehoming animals and functioning as a Rescue you can both take advantage of certain programs (spay/neuter programs for example, will often pay a signficant chunk of the vet bill if you're a 503c non-profit), but the flip side to the coin is, you're legally required to register and license yourself. You can "fly under the wire" for a little while, but eventually you'll get noticed. And getting noticed instead of being proactive and getting licensed usually means fines and can mean people arriving to shut you down with vans and crates to take your animals away.

    We advise people who are interested in starting a rescue to begin, right from the start, operating legitimately as a non-profit. The bother of doing the paperwork, setting it up, maintaining the necessary records is far outstripped by the benefits of being able to accept donations, operate fundraisers, the personal protection (however slim) of the corporatation from a legal point of view, and the perception of legitimacy which comes with being a true non-profit instead of someone just being "helpful" from their back yard.

    There is an area rescue in my county which started out as the dream of a couple of women about 10 years ago. They're very creative and have come up with a series of fund raising events that everyone can get behind.. from the "Mutt Strut" in the spring (a walk-a-thon with your dogs of course... prizes for costumes!) to the "Pee On a Tree" event at Christmas, in which (and I kid you not) people bring their dogs to a Christmas Tree Farm. The dog who pees on the most trees wins their family a free tree. To say this is hysterically good fun simply does not do justice to the event.

    Anyhow, they went from operating by renting a few cold and nasty cages at a local "boarding facility" to a state of the art, beautiful, building in less than 10 years. While I don't agree with their entire philosophy (they are "no kill" which means other facilities have to clean up the garbage for them, and they are "holistic" so they won't use what needs to be used on things like scabies) I admire their creativity in fund raising, raising awareness, and off site branding.

    A large part of Rescue isn't taking in unwanted animals, but working to raise awareness of how animals become unwanted in the first place... an ounce of prevention and all that. I'd say fully 75% of my time is taken up explaining to people how to choose a breeder, why they should pay "extra" for a well bred animal, why they should breed selectively or not at all... Only 25% of my time, or less, is spent actually engaged in "rescuing" animals.

    Given that ratio, you can be a "Rescue," never lay a finger on an animal, and do a world of good in the process. If it is important to you, start researching becoming a non-profit and go for it!

    T
     
  6. JoyKelley

    JoyKelley Well-Known Member

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    Morrison, wonderful reply. I had recently considered becoming a private sanctuary but for all the wrong reasons. Ie: tax break on feed, housing , medical etc. Decided against it for now and Your reply was timely , intelligent and well written.
    Thank you
     
  7. painterswife

    painterswife Sock puppet reinstated Supporter

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    That was a very well done post on the "money" side of the equation.

    The next thing to think about is the "time " side. I am well aquainted with a group here that "rescues" and cares for abused and abandoned animals.

    They get calls at all times of the night and day. They spend hours and hours caring for, cleaning and feeding these animals. There time is not their own.
    They spend countless hours trying to place these animals and get funds for the care.

    They take loads of abuse from people who originally abused the animals. They have to be very carefull about the new homes they place animals in.

    It can be a very thank-less job. Most of all, it is a job! Not a 8 hour a day one. Injuried and old animals often require care through-out the night.

    Jill
     
  8. Reillybug

    Reillybug Active Member

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    As someone who works in animal rescue, both the comments above about time and money are so true. While my rescue group doesn't have an actual facility, using only volunteer foster homes, we more than make up for those costs in care of our animals. We are the most popular clients at the local vet clinics! We spend thousands of dollars a month on vets, food, supplies, special training, etc... And my SO and I spend at a minimum 25+ hours per week of our time volunteering (in addition to our full time paying jobs) running pets to vets, picking up pets from relinquishing owners, interviewing potential adopters, being yelled at by rejected adopters, fielding phone calls for pets waiting to be taken in to our system, trying to find foster homes, and fostering the pets we care for in our own home. That doesn't count all the nights spent awake with sick animals, all the heartbreaks of required euthanizations, all the phone calls at 2 AM about sick/injured animals, and vacations we can't take because there is no one else to foster sick animals. While I know that we are doing good work and making a difference on a small scale, sometimes it's really just overwhelming. And we don't have to deal with the non-profit financials and paperwork, fund-raising, education programs, etc... as there are entirely different groups of volunteers within our organization who handle those aspects of rescue. Animal rescue is a wonderful and worthy cause, but is an incredible amount of work, takes an amazing amount of money, and a tremendous amount of devotion. And incidentally, as a grant writer, it seems there are significantly fewer funding sources available for sanctuary work, since the majority of funding seems to now be directed toward education, adoption, and spay/neuter programs in the hope that the combination these will eliminate the need for sanctuaries.
     
  9. rzrubek

    rzrubek Flying Z

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    I have read that charitable contributions are only tax deductable for the giver if the org. is a licensed nonprofit org. and then only if the giver makes enough to justify itemizeing their taxes.