Would you like to improve your community relationships?
You’re invited to join the Open Arms Challenge! This Challenge is all about opening our hearts and minds to more accessible and inclusive practices. For six weeks, starting November 22, 2021 and ending January 3, 2022, we are encouraging animal shelters and rescue organizations to pilot new approaches that open doors to new adopters and volunteers and welcome your entire community.
Not only do we hope to see adoptions, foster recruitment and volunteer interest go through the roof, but there’s also $200,000 in grants available!
The goal of this Challenge is to increase inclusivity and provide a welcoming environment for all community members. What that looks like is different for every organization. It can be as simple as providing literature in multiple languages or returning voicemails in a timely manner to completely redoing the adoption application, undertaking bias training or focusing on neighborhoods where adoption events were not previously held.
The Challenge is open to U.S.-based government animal shelters or 501c3 shelter or rescue organizations focused on dogs and/or cats who want to increase inclusivity and provide a welcoming environment for all community members. Welcoming practices that will be considered are those that actively make your organization’s culture more open, equitable and inclusive for your community.
To be considered to PARTICIPATE in this Challenge, your organization must:
- Be a U.S.-based government animal shelter or 501c3 shelter or rescue organization focused on dogs and/or cats.
- Be an active participant in Shelter Animals Count. (If you’re awarded a grant prize from this Challenge, you agree to join the Maddie’s Fund Coalition in Shelter Animals Count.)
- Be current on all grant reporting for any prior Maddie’s Fund grants.
- Register for the Challenge by submitting a complete application through the Maddie’s Fund Grants Portal. You’ll be notified by September 30, 2021 if you meet the eligibility requirements to participate in the Challenge. *Please note that your login for the Grants Portal is separate from what you use to access Maddie's Pet Forum. If you have any questions about your account status or login information, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Recommended but not required: participation in Petco Love Lost and Million Cat Challenge.