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Paws for Hope Animal Foundation Launches Accreditation Program

Vancouver, BC — The Paws for Hope Animal Foundation (Paws for Hope) is launching a brand new animal welfare accreditation program to help professionalize and standardize BC’s animal welfare sector. The accreditation program is informed by the Animal Welfare Standards of Practice that were created by Paws for Hope and our Network Partners and released in 2020.

“BC’s animal welfare sector is largely a volunteer-based and unregulated sector,” says Kathy Powelson, Paws for Hope Executive Director. “Unethical rescue practices continue to go unaddressed, families continue to end up with the heartache and expensive veterinary bills that result from nefarious animal welfare practices and as a result animals experience unnecessary suffering.”

The Animal Rescue Standards of Practice aim to provide feasible and scientifically-informed approaches to help organizations meet animal health and welfare needs. They also ensure that animal welfare and rescue organizations are operating in ways that meet legal requirements.

“Our immediate goal is to put this program into action. We have created an Audit Guide and have established an Accreditation Committee with representatives from a range of different animal organizations. Our long-term goal is for the provincial government to adopt these standards as a requirement for all animal rescue work in BC. Anyone who is interested in adopting or volunteering should be able to trust that the organization is acting in the best interests of both the animals they serve and the greater community.”

The Standards of Practice were developed by Paws for Hope’s Network Partners (formerly the Animal Welfare Advisory Network of BC) after an extensive literature review, a study of standards in other jurisdictions, and consultations with animal welfare professionals. The Standards of Practice have been designed to apply to any community-based animal rescue organization—including those that provide assistance to animals without owners, animals with families, and trap-neuter-return initiatives.

You can learn more about the Paws for Hope Network Partners and download the Animal Rescue Standards of Practice on the Paws for Hope website. You can also view a copy of the Accreditation Audit Guide and the members of the Accreditation Committee. Organizations interested in becoming accredited can fill out a request form on the Network Partners page or contact Kathy Powelson, Paws for Hope Executive Director at [email protected] or 604-396-9297.

About Paws for Hope Animal Foundation

Paws for Hope Animal Foundation is a provincial animal welfare charity whose mission is to keep pets and people together, ensure BC pets survive and thrive, and support positive change in the BC animal welfare sector.

For more information and to arrange interviews, please contact:
Kathy Powelson, Paws for Hope Executive Director
[email protected] or 604-396-9297

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