WASHINGTON STATE ANIMAL RESPONSE TEAM

Helping Animals and Their Owners in Emergencies

aka WASART   |   Enumclaw, WA   |  www.wasart.org

Mission

"To help animals and their owners in emergencies" WASART is an all-volunteer organization. We have no paid staff, and do not charge for our services. We save both human and animal lives through saving companion animals and livestock that are in dangerous situations. This can take the form of technical rescue, where we put a harness on and set up a rope system to retrieve a dog who has fallen over a cliff or setting up an emergency animal shelter for animals so their owners can take care of themselves during an emergency or disaster. Resources permitting, we offer our services throughout the State of Washington. We also respond with partner organizations locally and nationwide, such as county Search & Rescue units, the ASPCA, Red Rover, etc.

Notes from the nonprofit

WASART is an all-volunteer organization, with no paid staff. We do not charge for our services, but depend entirely on grants and donations to fund our efforts. In 2019 and 2020 respectively, WASART's members donated 7,869 and 5,521 hours of their time and drove 55,310 and 34,604 miles carrying out their mission to help animals and their owners in emergencies.

Ruling year info

2007

President

Josette Holden

Main address

P.O. Box 21

Enumclaw, WA 98022 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

26-0295234

NTEE code info

Animal Protection and Welfare (includes Humane Societies and SPCAs) (D20)

Search and Rescue Services (M23)

Management & Technical Assistance (W02)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

WASART has 3 program focuses: technical rescue of large and companion animals in emergency situations; emergency sheltering of animals in disasters; and public education for disaster preparedness, especially related to animal safety. We have developed capability for technical animal rescue unique in the Pacific Northwest. We do not self-deploy nor charge for our services. We deploy at the request of emergency managers and have established emergency animal shelters for animals displaced by wildfires. We have deployed many teams in support of the ASPCA and other national animal welfare organizations for sheltering operations nationwide in response to hurricanes, floods and tornadoes, and government seizure of animals from cruelty situations. We participate in many community events each year to educate the public about disaster preparedness for animals and conduct FEMA Animal Response segments of Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Emergency Technical Animal Rescue

WASART responds to requests from individual animal owners and animal control, law enforcement and emergency management organizations to rescue and assist animals in emergency situations. We do not self-deploy. These responses may include technical animal rescue, using rope systems and other state of the art rescue equipment, of large and companion animals that have fallen over cliffs or into wells, are trapped in mud, and many other emergency situations. Emergency response teams may respond to emergency management requests to evacuate animals in advance of, or in response to, disaster situations.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Emergency responders

Training for WASART members to deploy in response to animal emergencies to rescue or evacuate livestock and companion animals which have been displaced by disasters or which need to be extracted from life-threatening situations.

Population(s) Served
Adults

WASART establishes and/or operates emergency shelters for livestock and companion animals when deployed to do so by emergency management or law enforcement agencies. WASART has sent many teams to support national animal welfare organizations in the aftermath of natural disasters or animal cruelty seizures.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Emergency responders

WASART trains its members and other interested parties from the general public, public agencies, and other animal welfare groups in planning, establishing and operating emergency shelters for large and companion animals. Training includes extensive training with live domestic animals of all sizes and species.

Population(s) Served
Emergency responders
Adults

WASART participates in many community outreach activities such as safety fairs, pet exhibitions, equine events, etc. to educate the public about disaster preparedness. WASART has conducted the Animal Response training modules for numerous Community Emergency Response Teams (CERTs) in the Greater Puget Sound area.

Population(s) Served
Adults
Emergency responders

WASART's Technical Rescue Team trains monthly to maintain its proficiency in setting up and operating rope rescue systems and other technical rescue equipment essential for the safe rescue of large and small animals in hazardous situations. This training is additional to the Base/Operations Support training described above.

Population(s) Served

WASART's Technical Rescue Team (Water) trains monthly to maintain its proficiency in setting up and operating rope rescue systems and other technical rescue equipment essential for the safe rescue of large and small animals from hazardous situations in rivers, streams, creeks, swamps, etc. This training is additional to the Base/Operations Support training described above.

Population(s) Served
Emergency responders
Emergency responders

Where we work

Awards

Special Achievement Award 2013

Pierce County, Washington

Special Achievement Award for WASART founders 2019

Washington Search and Rescue Volunteer Advisory Council

Affiliations & memberships

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals 2011

Red Rover 2012

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of deployments per year

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults

Related Program

Emergency Technical Animal Rescue

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

The number of times our assistance is requested is an indicator of confidence in our organization, and how well-known we have become to stakeholders. However, not all requests result in deployments.

Number of members at year-end

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Emergency Technical Animal Rescue

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number of members is indicative of how well WASART is meeting its members' expectations, as well as whether its reputation is attracting new members. More members increase our capability to respond.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

WASART's goals, as expressed in its Vision Statement, are:
To provide animals in emergency situations and their owners solutions to resolve their situations
To provide animal owners a resource where none exists
To save human lives by responding to situations where animals are in danger so non-skilled owners and bystanders don't risk death and injury to themselves
To provide a group for people to give back and find community of supportive peers across all demographics
To be the premier animal disaster response organization throughout the Northwest
To be recognized as a model for other animal response organizations
To be recognized as the best trained, most highly respected animal response organization in the region

WASART's strategies to achieve its goals are:
To involve and recruit volunteers to take a more active role in the organizations activities
To listen to each volunteer and match them with their interests, goals, and skills
To keep in mind whom we serve as we make policy and guideline decisions
To promote from within
To reinforce positive interactions
To provide opportunities for people to feel comfortable learning new skills
To achieve technical expertise though extensive and rigorous training
To be respected by our stakeholders because of our commitment to our Core Values of Integrity,
Education, Professionalism, Teamwork and Volunteerism
To raise the necessary funds to support our activities through grants and donations
To promote our activities through accurate and effective reporting in social and news media

WASART has established capability for technical animal rescue in emergencies that is unique in the Northwest. Many members are experienced in rescuing and sheltering animals through deployments with WASART and national animal welfare organizations for disaster response and other emergencies throughout the U. S. and internationally. WASART has grown to about 150 members, 10% of whom are veterinary professionals. It maintains a corral panel trailer plus 4 utility trailers, 3 equipped for emergency sheltering and 1 for emergency rescue of large and small animals, 2 trucks for towing the trailers, and a box van equipped identically with the rescue trailer. All equipment is staged for timely response throughout its service area. In the event of a wide-scale disaster that overwhelms its resources, WASART has a Memorandum of Understanding with RedRover, a national organization specializing in emergency sheltering, to provide additional assets to augment its own resources.

WASART's growth from 2 founders in 2007 to over 150 members throughout Washington is indicative of the impact of its programs and activities. Our working relationships with emergency management agencies, law enforcement, Search and Rescue groups and animal control agencies are all indicative of adherence to our Core Values and the recognition by those partners that we are a valued asset to our communities' animal welfare needs. Establishment of Memoranda of Understanding with local and regional emergency management agencies and with national animal welfare organizations demonstrate that we are progressing toward our vision of becoming the premier animal disaster response organization throughout the Northwest.

We struggle to raise sufficient revenue to procure relatively expensive (four and five figures) rescue and training equipment which must be replaced as the structures expire or become damaged, but have made considerable progress through some grants and numerous contributions.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Community meetings/Town halls, Suggestion box/email, feedback via social media, and checking in post-rescue,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To develop better techniques for improving outcomes,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    Recently, we'd heard a veterinary hospital we send rescues to wasn't sure how to extract a horse from a trailer. We set up some time to meet with them to see how we could help them with training, or how we could make the situation easier for them with our own methods when we send animals and their owners to them.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    Our board,

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback,

Financials

WASHINGTON STATE ANIMAL RESPONSE TEAM
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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WASHINGTON STATE ANIMAL RESPONSE TEAM

Board of directors
as of 06/02/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Josette Holden

No affiliation

Term: 2020 - 2022

Josette Holden

No Affiliation

Jeremy Kane, EMT

No Affiliation

Jeanette Whitmire

No Affiliation

Michaela Eaves

No Affiliation

Kimberly Taylor

No Affiliation

Gretchen McCallum, JD

No Affiliation

Bill Daugaard, PE

No Affiliation

Jeff Dahl, DVM

No Affiliation

Julie Shipman

No Affiliation

Rory Kelleher

No Affiliation

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Not applicable
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 5/31/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 01/22/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.