The Foster Express Challenge has officially reached its destination, and we’re thrilled with the outcome of the this journey! Before we get to the 19 grant recipients, it should go without saying that all 132 participating organizations are true champions, with over 8,000 animals going out on field trips across the United States. It may sound a little cheesy, but as Foster Express Challenge participants, you truly went above and beyond. So many dogs and cats benefited from your hard work and commitment to step outside of your comfort zones.
Don’t believe us? The numbers speak for themselves!
A total of 8,339 animals went out on 11,115 short-term foster trips… and these trips weren’t just for the dogs, either. Cats accounted for 2,667 short-term foster trips with 2,374 felines taking advantage of a little R ‘n R. Dogs took advantage of going on 8,580 field trips with over 6,000 pups participating.
What’s more, of these foster participants, nearly 70% of all animals (4,179 dogs and 1,597 cats) were adopted! Several shelters reported that 100% of their animals that participated were adopted. That is ah-mazing!
See – we weren’t joking when we said you were all champs!
That being said, this wouldn’t be a challenge without some grant winners. Without further ado, here are the top dogs (and cats) broken down by intake size (small: 1,500 or less, medium: 1,501-5,000 and large: 5,001 or more). A total of $55,000 is being awarded among the following organizations.
Number of Animals in Challenge $5,000 each
- Small: Sand Springs Animal Welfare, Sand Springs, OK – 126 animals
- Medium: Unleashed Pet Rescue and Adoption, Mission, KS – 173 animals
- Large: Bowling Green/Warren County Humane Society, Bowling Green, KY – 295 animals
Number of Short-Term Foster Trips $5,000 each
- Small: Rainbow Friends Animal Sanctuary, Kurtistown, HI – 211 trips
- Medium: Kauai Humane Society, Lihue, HI – 299 trips
- Large: The Front Street Shelter, Sacramento, CA – 475 trips
Number of Adoptions $5,000 each
- Small: Ohio Alleycat Resource & Spay/Neuter Clinic, Cincinnati, OH – 168 adoptions (72% of challenge animals)
- Medium: Fredericksburg SPCA, Fredericksburg, VA – 142 adoptions (87% of challenge animals)
- Large: Kentucky Humane Society, Louisville, KY – 168 adoptions (86% of challenge animals)
10 randomly drawn winners at $1,000 each
- Austin Humane Society, Austin, TX
- AZ Small Dog Rescue, Phoenix, AZ
- Boone Area Humane Society, Boone, IA
- Hamilton County Humane Society, Noblesville, IN
- Humane Society Waterville Area, Waterville, ME
- The Louisiana SPCA, New Orleans, LA
- Pets in Need, Redwood City, CA
- Public Animal Welfare Services, Rome, GA
- San Antonio Pets Alive, San Antonio, TX
- SPCA of Texas, Dallas, TX
“The response from the organizations participating was overwhelmingly positive,” said Kelly Clardy, Senior Grants Specialist at Maddie’s Fund. “Many groups offered feedback about how easy it was to involve their community, staff and volunteers, even if they were initially were apprehensive about the idea of short-term foster trips. They enjoyed the benefits of learning more about the animals’ behavior, having more photos and videos of the animals from the foster volunteers and increased exposure and promotion of adoption. It was also interesting to see how many cats participated and enjoyed their time away from the shelter.”
Congratulations to EVERYONE for embracing short-term foster programs and thank you for all the hard work you do on behalf of the animals and the humans who love and care for them, even for a sleep over or daytime outing. Full steam ahead to saving more lives!