FACE Looks to the Future with Strategic Planning Retreat

FACE Foundation Board at the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary.

The FACE Foundation Board recently returned from a strategic planning retreat, hosted by the Best Friends Animal Society at their Sanctuary, which is in beautiful Kanab, Utah.  Best Friends operates the largest no-kill sanctuary for companion animals in the U.S.  Best Friends was founded thirty years ago by a small group of dedicated animal advocates who united together in the mission to save abused and abandoned companion animals, and end the euthanasia of these animals in our nation’s shelters.  They serve as a testament to what can be accomplished when people work together for a greater cause, and are a great inspiration to the members of the FACE team.

FACE Board President Cini Gannon Robb getting kisses from a furry friend.

This strategic planning retreat was completely underwritten by the Board so no FACE funds were used.  These sessions are generally held every 3-5 years, so there are always plenty of important topics to discuss.  They revisited FACE’s mission and vision, and friends of FACE can expect to see a fine-tuning of our vision statement soon.  The Board also discussed a revamping of our marketing and fundraising strategies.

FACE Board Member Dr. John Hart with a Best Friends pup.

Other exciting news to come out of the strategic planning retreat?  We plan to revisit our granting process to put more trust in our valued veterinary partners when it comes to determining how FACE grants will be distributed to pet owners facing financial hardship due to emergency and critical care veterinary services.

FACE Executive Director Brooke Haggerty and a fuzzy little friend.

We also are very interested in finding ways to help cases that might not be “immediately life-threatening” but the animals’ quality of life would be drastically and negatively impacted without veterinary care.  This would potentially broaden our criteria for determining what kinds of cases we can help…with the ultimate goal of saving more lives!  At FACE, we remain united in the belief that no beloved family pet should be euthanized because of lack of funds to pay for critical veterinary care.  Thanks to all of our friends and supporters, we are working hard to make this goal a reality.

FACE Board hard at work!

 

“Words of Thanks” Video on FACE YouTube Channel

Hey, did you know that the FACE Foundation has its own YouTube channel?  We get so many wonderful letters from the families of pets saved with the help of FACE grants that we decided to make a video to share some of their kind words.  Hope you enjoy this heartwarming video as much as we do!

 

SoulPaws Recovery Project: Animal-Assisted Therapy Helps People with Eating Disorders

We’d like to share a bit of news about a project close to the heart of FACE’s very busy Humane Educator Annie Petersen: the SoulPaws Recovery Project. Besides the work she does with FACE to educate young people in our community about pets and animals, Annie has also worked with other organizations like the San Diego Humane Society and the Zoological Society of San Diego.

Annie, who holds an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Management, has also served as the President of the Association for Human-Animal Bond Studies. Currently, Annie works closely with an amazing organization called the SoulPaws Recovery Project, which she co-founded with Shannon Kopp. The mission of SoulPaws is to offer therapeutic support (including animal-assisted therapy) to those affected by eating disorders.

SoulPaws is dedicated to rescuing shelter animals and utilizing animal-assisted therapy to support sufferers of eating disorders. SoulPaws works with certified therapy animals as well as shelter animals. They also use other therapies like yoga, journaling, and art therapy. Their work was recently featured on the Huffington Post website. Be sure to check out the article and the SoulPaws website to learn more about this great non-profit.

We are very grateful to have such an amazing advocate as part of the FACE team. Thank you for all you do for the animals…and people…in our community, Annie!

 

A FACE in the Spotlight: Meet Dr. Seth Ganz

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Dr. Ganz and Rebel

In addition to being a surgeon at FACE partner Veterinary Specialty Hospital, Dr. Seth Ganz also serves as a Veterinary Relations Advisor on FACE’s Advisory Committee.   Dr. Ganz’s dedication to saving the lives of pets in need of urgent veterinary care is obvious. “As a doctor, I like knowing that there may be a chance to help an animal and the family when another option isn’t available,” says Dr. Ganz. “I’m just always grateful that I am in a position where I can help!”

Dr. Ganz has a DVM from Tufts University School of Veterinary Medicine. He completed a 3 year small animal surgical residency in Wisconsin and is board certified by the American College of Veterinary Surgeons. Dr. Ganz performs a wide range of surgeries, including orthopedic and soft tissue surgery as well as neurosurgery. What’s his most memorable FACE case? “They are all equally memorable, whether the actual case was more severe/dramatic/unusual, it doesn’t matter,” says Dr. Ganz. Dr. Ganz is grateful for the opportunity to perform surgeries on pets that would otherwise be debilitated, die, or be euthanized for economic reasons.

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Dr. Ganz and Winter

 Dr. Ganz values his collaborative relationship with FACE. “It’s a special group of people and it was started purely as a desire to solve a real problem and make a real difference,” he notes. As for himself, “It’s a chance to be involved with a group that has shown a determination to make a significant impact on the lives of so many animals and their families here in San Diego,” he says. In his role as FACE Advisory Committee Member, Dr. Ganz advises on decisions for funding medical care for potential FACE grantees. “This allows the organization to use donations in the most effective manner and maximize the intended result per donated dollar,” explains Dr. Ganz.

While Dr. Ganz enjoys his work at the hospital and with FACE, he also values spending his off-time with his wife, young twin boys, and a one-eyed pit bull-mix named Winter. Dr. Ganz enjoys running and biking, and hopes to travel to new destinations with his wife when life gets a bit less hectic!

Dr. Ganz enthusiastically recommends that other veterinary practices consider working with FACE or other organizations with a similar mission in their geographic area. “They want to help,” he says. “They want to get their donations to the pets that need them. Vets want to help every patient. It’s a win-win. Enough said!” We couldn’t agree more, Dr. Ganz! Thanks to you and all of your colleagues at VSH for helping us save the lives of pets in need!