The situation we’re facing is daunting. Today — and each and every day — more than 9,000 pets will be killed in American shelters. That’s six pets per minute, a truly heartbreaking statistic.
Best Friends is committed to bringing an end to this killing, and there has been remarkable progress on this front in the last couple of years. Los Angeles, as an example, now has the lowest number of shelter deaths annually in its history. But Best Friends and our members aren’t working alone. We’ve always believed in getting together with like-minded organizations to save lives. In L.A., we put together the NKLA Coalition, which is now 75 organizations strong. Each of these organizations is working together toward the common goal of turning L.A. into No-Kill Los Angeles.
The coalition model is something we not only believe in at Best Friends, it’s something we’ve practiced for many years. It’s going to take many organizations working successfully together to achieve a sustainable end to shelter deaths.
Each year, to this end, we give grants to 501(c)3 organizations around the country that are part of the Best Friends No More Homeless Pets Network. This program is designed to provide support, financially and through other means, to animal welfare organizations working to Save Them All.
I’m thrilled to be able to say that in the 2014 fiscal year, nearly $503,000 in grants was dispersed to 55 Network partner groups nationwide. The grants, which averaged more than $9,000 each, had some pretty impressive results, including 3,190 adoptions, 9,416 spay/neuter surgeries and a kitten nursery program that will save the lives of 1,200 kittens. The groups selected to receive grants are all doing great things for pets.
Here are a few examples:
- Incred-A-Bull, a pit bull advocacy organization in Las Vegas, Nevada, received money to help people spay or neuter their pit-bull-terrier-type dogs.
- The Liberty Humane Society in Jersey City, New Jersey, wanted help with a trap/neuter/return (TNR) project. We happily funded the project to the tune of $9,990 to fix 220 shelter cats.
- The Spay Neuter Network in Arlington, Texas, received $20,000 as part of a project that trapped, neutered and returned more than 660 community cats.
- In North Carolina, the Humane Alliance received $20,000 to be used as a subsidy to help with adoptions. The animals will be offered at a reduced adoption fee, which will help promote adoption, but the shelter will still have their costs covered.
There are more than 1,000 Network partners and they’re all working together, from different corners of the nation, to Save Them All. Besides grants, Network membership comes with benefits such as the chance to take part in national adoption promotions, eligibility for discounts and scholarships to educational conferences, and consultations with Best Friends staff. Network partners can also take part in fundraising events like our nationwide Strut Your Mutt. In the 2013 Strut Your Mutt alone, more than $1.1 million was raised for our Network partners around the country.
The lifesaving work Best Friends does with you is urgent and the No More Homeless Pets Network is an important way to extend our reach to communities across the U.S.
Best Friends saves a lot of lives, but together, we can do even more. In fact, together, we can Save Them All.
Best Friends Animal Society