Thank you so much for your support and interest in staying up-to-date on all the latest of this very exciting and new adventure for Animal House Rescue & Grooming and Fort Collins Cat Rescue & Spay/Neuter Clinic.
Here you will find FAQs, updates, and our link to the blog dedicated to the merger. If you have any questions that you can’t find the answer to here you may contact Ali at Ali@animalhousehelp.org or Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org
Why are the two organizations merging?
- Animal House Rescue & Grooming and Fort Collins Cat Rescue & Spay/Neuter Clinic have long been pillars in our community. We have collaborated on numerous projects and events, and we have heard suggestions for years that our two organizations should merge. Ali Eccleston, Animal Houses Executive Director, has been looking to explore new opportunities and we feel that the time is right for our two organizations to become one. We have been exploring this opportunity for the last ten months, and anticipate many benefits, the most important being the opportunity to have a bigger impact on the animals and people in our community and beyond.
What will be the name of the combined organization?
- We will be soliciting input from the community about the organization’s new name, and making a decision in the coming months. Stay tuned!
How long will the process take?
- We anticipate moving forward as one combined organization beginning in January 2020. Our long term strategic plan will be formulated over the coming months, and we will be making plans for the future development of our facilities and programs.
Who will be the executive director? And what will happen to Ali?
- FCCRSNCs co-founder and executive director Sarah Swanty will be the executive director of the new organization. Ali will play a crucial role in the merger process and continue on for a time in a consultative capacity after the merger.
What is the mission of the new organization?
- Our organization’s official mission and vision statements will be determined in the coming months; however, our commitment to second chances, preventing pet homelessness, and making every pet healthy and wanted remains and will be continued into our future work.
Will the staff lose their jobs?
- No staff members will lose their job as a result of the merger. We will be working hard over the next few months to create the best possible transition plans, and staff members will have the opportunity to have a say in their role in the new organization.
How can I stay informed about the merger?
- There are lots of ways to stay informed! We have a blog about the merger, where we will post updates on the process ( catdogmergerblog.blogspot.com ). You can also follow us on Facebook ( facebook.com/FCCRSNC and facebook.com/animalhouserescue ) and subscribe to our digital and print newsletters.
Service Related Questions
Will current programs and services of both organizations continue to be funded?
- Absolutely. Both organizations are committed to continuing the programs and services that have enabled thousands of dogs and cats to be adopted and helped thousands of people to access services and resources that keep their pets in loving homes where they belong.
Will we offer new programs and services?
- Our organizations have always prided themselves in being responsive to the community and rolling out new programs and services that directly address growing needs in animal welfare as our resources allow. Going forward we will continue to assess our community’s greatest needs and grow current programs, and add new programs as appropriate.
Where will the new organization be located?
- For now, all of our services will continue to operate in the same locations. Over the course of the next few years, we will be engaging in a planning process to determine how best to utilize the facilities that are available to us. It is probable that the locations of some of our services will be changing. We are eager to examine the possibilities and excited to share our progress with you along the way!
Can I go to either location to adopt?
- For the time being, dog adoptions will continue to take place at the Taft Hill Road facility (currently Animal House, 2200 N. Taft Hill Road), and cats will still be available for adoption at the Mulberry Street facility (currently FCCRSNC, 2321 E. Mulberry Street, Unit 1).
Will the adoption process/fees change?
- The process of merging two large and well-established organizations will necessitate many changes to many of our processes and policies, but we do not anticipate any significant changes to our adoption process or fees.
Will grooming move?
- For now, all of our services will continue to operate in their current locations. The location of the grooming salon may change in the future. To stay updated, subscribe to our blog about the merger.
Donor Related Questions
Will I be able to designate my donation to help a specific species or a specific program?
- We always welcome your donations. Should you choose to direct it toward a specific program, we will honor your wishes in that regard. Your donation is most easily utilized when it is not directed toward a single program or species. Our needs vary from month to month and sometimes from day to day!
How will this impact fundraising?
- Each of our organizations will share a fundraising and development team that is larger than it was prior to the merger! In the coming months, we will be working together to determine how to build the best and most efficient team. Many of your favorite fundraising programs and events will continue, though their names or other details may change to reflect our updated mission and values.
Will you continue to have the same fundraising events?
- Many of the same fundraising events you have come to anticipate or love will continue! We will be working as a team to determine which events will have the most positive impact for animals and the community going forward.
What needs to happen if I have named AH or FCCRSNC as a beneficiary in my planned giving?
- First, if you have named one of our organizations as a beneficiary and haven’t let us know, please reach out! We want to thank you for your generosity and make sure we have all of the information we need for the future. Second, we will be working with you once the merger is complete to let you know how to update your bequest to include the organization’s new name.
Will your operating budget increase?
- The operating budget for 2020 has not yet been determined, but as a larger organization, we expect a larger budget than either organization had individually. However, some redundant costs will be eliminated, which makes our new organization more efficient and is another great reason for us to merge.
Will this affect my automatic monthly donations?
- Right now, this will not affect your automatic donations to either organization. We will be working with you prior to completion of the merger to update your information if necessary.
How will the cost of the merger be accounted for?
- We are excited about working with individuals, businesses, and foundations to fund the rebranding and other costs associated with the merger. We are so heartened and hopeful by the numerous members of these groups who have already expressed their excitement about the merger and a desire to help with the costs.
What will happen to current projects that have already been donated to but not yet completed?
- We plan to continue all of the programs that both of our organizations are currently funding. If you’ve donated to a specific program that you have questions about, we encourage you to follow our merger blog and/or reach out to us directly.
What will happen to my signage/recognition?
- We want to honor the contributions you have made to our organizations in the past. We dont currently have any plans for removing donor recognition from our facilities.
If I donate to both AH & FCCRSNC, should I reduce my total donation once they are a single entity? (e.g. if I currently donate $100 monthly to each organization, once they have merged, should I reduce my monthly donation to $100 total?)
- Your decision about how much to contribute to the new organization is a personal one, but we would love it if you were willing and able to continue to contribute at the same level going forward. Though we are becoming one organization, the scope of our work is not decreasing, and our ultimate goal is to increase our work in the community and beyond. Well need your continued, generous support to make this happen. If you have questions about the financial needs of the new organization, we would be happy to meet with you to discuss that.
VOLUNTEER RELATED QUESTIONS
Will I need to go through another orientation?
- Most likely not. We are working on the best way to integrate the amazing volunteers that are currently with one or both organizations. We will share more information about this once we have decided on the best path forward.
Will signup change?
- We will have special cross-organizational orientations for current volunteers to learn about the organization at which they do not currently volunteer prior to 2020.
Will I still be able to volunteer how I want?
- You can continue to perform the volunteer activities you’re currently doing, but you may have to complete additional training if you wish to volunteer at the new location or volunteer in a different area.
If I only want to volunteer with cats, or only want to volunteer with dogs, is that okay?
- Yes. It is important to us that our volunteers feel comfortable, confident, and happy when performing their work. There will be many volunteer opportunities once the merger happens, and working specifically with dogs or working specifically with cats will continue to be an option much like it is now.
As a volunteer for many years who has taken on a leadership role, will I have to start over from the beginning?
- Definitely not. Both our volunteers and staff will keep the tenure that they had with either of the single organizations. There may be some new training that you will need so that we can ensure our tenured volunteers know about both facilities and all of the programs and services the new single organization offers.
Head over to our blog that will be updated with all things merger!
Get to know Sarah Swanty:
Sarah Swanty has had a lifelong passion for helping animals and began working in a veterinary clinic at the age of 17 with plans to become a veterinarian. While pursuing the veterinary track at Colorado State University (B.S. in Zoology) and gaining experience through her work in veterinary clinics, she began volunteering for a local animal sanctuary and found her true passion to be in animal welfare. In June of 2006 she co-founded Fort Collins Cat Rescue & Spay/Neuter Clinic. Sarah submerged herself in the animal welfare world and has grown into running a successful, community-supported nonprofit organization. She was recognized for her work in the community as a 2015 Northern Colorado Superwoman (Mind+Body Magazine), a 2018 Woman of Vision Honoree (Colorado Women of Influence), and a 2018 40 Under Forty Honoree (BizWest). Sarah shares her home with her husband, three sons, and several four-legged family members, including cats, a dog (adopted from Animal House), & horses.