WhatCanWe.org™ started in 2012 to raise awareness and funds for licensed, nonprofit animal rescues in order to help offset the financial hardships most currently endure due to overwhelming veterinary expenses.
Today, every 1.5 seconds a homeless animal’s life is terminated in a shelter. That’s 40 animals every minute and nearly 2,400 animals each hour. Fortunately, there is an army of benevolent rescue organizations that are on the front lines battling every day in an effort to positively change these numbers.
The challenge these rescues face is the exorbitant cost of medical care for these abandoned animals. In fact, these expenses drain more than 50% of a rescue’s operating budget. This covers a diverse range of medical problems that occur before an animal is rescued including:
- Undetected or untreated illnesses
Since most of these rescues rely solely on limited resources, compassionate community volunteers, and charitable donations, these costs have a staggering impact on a rescue’s ability to save more animals in need. According to Robert Ferber, Senior Trial Attorney, Animal Abuse Prosecution Team, L.A. City Attorney’s Office, who deals with policy, legislation, and outreach:
“Finding a way to alleviate veterinary expenses’ toll on rescue groups has the potential to save millions more animals.”
WhatCanWe.org is determined to change this situation by creating and implementing meaningful, easily replicated fundraising projects for licensed animal rescues, individuals, and groups within communities. These innovative fundraisers and programs have started on a local level and will be duplicated across the United States for the benefit of animal rescues. Projects underway include:
- WhatCanWe.org’s practical and inspirational book “Tails of L.I.F.E.,” which includes rescue tips and tales, can be replicated simply and economically by rescues across the nation to raise funds directly.
- Our environmentally friendly Tiled Trash Receptacles will be created and installed across the United States. Each will be decorated with customized tribute tiles purchased and designed by donors.
In addition, WhatCanWe.org has a number of concepts under development including projects to support organizations that care for retired service animals.
Ultimately, WhatCanWe.org intends to create a nonprofit teaching veterinary clinic that offers low or no-cost veterinary care to licensed, nonprofit rescues. To support this goal, we are hosting a wide variety of special events and programs, and developing relationships with sustaining partners.
The Evolution of WhatCanWe.org
A Lifelong Passion
Beth Pattee and Shannon Delgado, co-founders of WhatCanWe.org, share a lifelong passion for animals. Having cared for numerous pets and volunteered with community rescue organizations they developed a deep appreciation for the role animals play in all people’s lives. They saw first-hand how animals and our communities benefit from all the dedicated rescue organizations that serve homeless animal populations and work diligently to place them in forever homes. They believe that when a dog is rescued and placed in a forever home, there is “HEALING AT BOTH ENDS OF THE LEASH™.”
One Question. A Profound Answer.
In February 2012 Christopher Myers, a valued volunteer at L.I.F.E. Animal Rescue and close family friend of WhatCanWe.org co-founders Beth Pattee and Shannon Delgado, passed away after a tragic auto accident. In the wake of this tragedy, many people impacted by the profound example of altruism this young man had demonstrated with his three years of compassionate volunteering felt the need to do something in his honor, and repeatedly asked…
“What can we do?”
Because of Christopher’s tragic loss, Beth and Shannon spent more time with L.I.F.E. Animal Rescue and its founders. They started research to answer that simple but profound question…
“What can we do?”
To their amazement, Beth and Shannon identified a substantial void that hampers the efforts of virtually every licensed, nonprofit rescue. It is a challenge that often puts the rescue organization’s survival at risk and gravely impacts their ability to save more animals.
The fact is that more than 50% of most rescues’ operating budgets are depleted by the staggering cost of providing desperately needed veterinary procedures.
This fact alone helped answer the question, and WhatCanWe.org was founded with a mission to raise funds and awareness in order to assist licensed, nonprofit animal rescues with veterinary care.
When animal rescues take in a homeless animal, they commit to doing whatever is necessary to help it survive and thrive. A rescue’s primary purpose is to nurture each animal and transition them to placement in a forever home. Often rescues save animals that are scheduled for euthanasia within the next 24 hours. Quick decisions must be made in order to save animals’ lives, which can result in unanticipated emergency veterinary expenses.
An animal may have internal injuries, need emergency surgery, be battling an undiagnosed condition or suffer from other ailments that were not readily apparent. When that happens, it costs the rescue hundreds if not thousands of dollars for veterinary care. These emergency expenses severely limit the rescues’ ability to save more animals. Unlike animal shelters, animal rescue groups do not receive any government aid or funding. Most rely solely on limited resources, private contributions from animal lovers, and countless hours of time donated by benevolent volunteers.
WhatCanWe.org is determined to assist licensed, nonprofit rescue groups save millions more animals across the country by helping raise and provide funds to offset these medical expenses. That begs the question…
What can you do?
Get involved. Volunteer. Adopt or foster an animal. Donate to our foundation. Together…
We can make a difference.