Running a pet rescue or shelter is a noble and selfless endeavor, but it’s crucial to consider the future of your organization and the animals in your care. While we may not like to think about it, illness or unexpected events can disrupt our ability to continue providing for these vulnerable creatures. That’s why having a backup plan in place is essential. In this blog, we will explore the importance of having a contingency plan and how to ensure the well-being of your animals if you are unable to continue your work.
Acknowledge the Possibility
As dedicated pet rescuers, it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day operations and forget to plan for unforeseen circumstances. However, it’s crucial to acknowledge the possibility of illness or even our mortality. By accepting this reality, we can take proactive steps to secure the future of our rescue or shelter.
Create a Comprehensive Backup Plan
Developing a backup plan involves considering various aspects of your pet organization’s operations. Here are some key elements to include:
- Identify a Successor: Choose someone you trust, who shares your passion for animal welfare, and is willing to take on the responsibility of running the rescue or shelter if you are unable to. Discuss your intentions with them and ensure they are willing to step in when needed.
- Document Your Processes: Create detailed documentation of your rescue or shelter’s daily operations, including feeding schedules, medical protocols, adoption procedures, and any other essential information. This will help your successor seamlessly continue the work you started.
- Financial Planning: Consider the financial implications of your absence. Establish an emergency fund or explore options for insurance coverage that can support the ongoing care of the animals in your absence.
- Legal Considerations: Consult with an attorney to draft a will or establish a trust that clearly outlines your wishes for the rescue or shelter. This legal documentation will ensure your animals are cared for according to your intentions.
Communicate Your Backup Plan
Once you have a comprehensive backup plan in place, it’s crucial to communicate it effectively. Share your intentions with your successor, trusted volunteers, and close friends or family members. Make sure everyone involved understands their roles and responsibilities in the event of your absence.
Regularly Review and Update
As circumstances change, it’s important to review and update your backup plan periodically. Life is unpredictable, and your plan should adapt accordingly. Stay in touch with your successor and ensure they are still willing and able to take on the responsibility when the time comes.
Owning a pet rescue or shelter is a labor of love, and it’s our responsibility to ensure the animals in our care are protected even if we are unable to continue our work. By creating a comprehensive backup plan, documenting processes, and communicating our intentions, we can secure the future of our organizations and provide peace of mind for ourselves and our furry friends. Remember, a well-prepared backup plan is the ultimate act of compassion for the animals who rely on us.