The Big Fix

aka THE BIG FIX   |   Port Townsend, WA   |  www.thebigfixuganda.org

Mission

To alleviate the suffering of animals through veterinary service, spay/neuter and education. Our work is primarily carried out in Northern Uganda.

Ruling year info

2002

Executive Director

Ms. Sarah Schmidt

Main address

P. O. Box 1997

Port Townsend, WA 98368 USA

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Formerly known as

CENTRAL VALLEY COALITION FOR ANIMALS

EIN

30-0019352

NTEE code info

Veterinary Services (D40)

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

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

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

After 20 years of war in the region and a complete lack of veterinary services, Northern Uganda developed issues of overpopulation of dogs and cats and spread of many diseases including rabies. Due to lack of education, lack of veterinary services, and lack of resources of the people, the animals suffered greatly. Unwanted companion animals either were left to fend for themselves or they were killed. Severe malnutrition, severe internal parasite infestation, severe flea and tick infestation, and untreated wounds and injuries are common in the population of dogs and cats. The BIG FIX Uganda now operates the only veterinary hospital in the region which is home to 2 million people, and provides village outreach services. Without these programs, hundreds of companion animals every month would not have access to these services.

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?

Veterinary Services

Operation of Northern Uganda's only veterinary hospital, open 7 days a week; provide veterinary services in villages; rabies vaccination, de-worming, spay/neuter, treatment illnesses/injuries/diseases.

Population(s) Served
Adults

The Comfort Dog Project pairs war trauma survivors with rescued dogs. Along with education and mentoring as well as psycho-social support services, the dog and guardian undergo a 20 week training program. Now in its fourth year, the Comfort Dog Project has documented measurable success in treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder through its dog companionship program. Project graduates go on to serve as community dog rescue officers, home check officers, mentors, and dog trainers.

Population(s) Served
Adults

School Outreach with an Education Team including our Education manager, two dog-guardian teams from The Comfort Dog Project, and the PRO of Aswa Region police; bi-weekly one-long radio talk show focused on animal welfare issues; and a mural painting project within the Gulu Municipal Area to work with children to create art that helps educate the public on the importance of being kind to animals.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Adults

Where we work

Awards

World Rabies Day Award for Sub-Sahara Africa 2018

Global Alliance for Rabies Control

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 animals spayed and neutered

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

Social and economic status, Family relationships

Related Program

Veterinary Services

Type of Metric

Context - describing the issue we work on

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Number of animals with freedom from discomfort

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

Health

Related Program

Veterinary Services

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Number of animals vaccinated, de-wormed, treated for wounds, and given flea/tick treatment

Number of schools visited with humane education program

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

Age groups

Related Program

Animal Welfare Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Decreasing

Context Notes

Note that our plan for 2020 was to visit 60 schools, however, the COVID-19 stay-at-home orders and school closure resulted in schools being closed at the end of March through end of 2020.

Number of village veterinary field clinics held

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

Health

Related Program

Veterinary Services

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Decreasing

Context Notes

Note that we were not permitted to hold field clinics during the period of Uganda's lockdown due to COVID-19.

Number of students and teachers reached with humane education program

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

Age groups

Related Program

Animal Welfare Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Decreasing

Context Notes

Note that our school program could not be fully carried out during 2020 due to the closure of schools at the end of March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

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.

We aim to be a leading organization in Africa in promoting the health and well-being of animals, to improve the quality of veterinary care for animals, to provide free veterinary services for all animals in need, to humanely control rabies in Uganda, to humanely control populations of dogs and cats through spay/neuter, to achieve a day in Uganda when all dogs and cats have a good home where The Five Freedoms are met, to promote kindness and compassion toward all living beings, to promote good human-animal bonds through programs such as our Comfort Dog Project, to teach people to be loving guardians of all the animals in their care, to teach people to reject cruel methods of dog training in favor of positive reinforcement training, and to develop young leaders who will carry forward our mission.

1. We promote animal health and wellness by providing comprehensive free veterinary services in Northern Uganda's remote and impoverished villages.
2. We control dog and cat populations (thus working toward the day when all animals have good homes and adequate care) through a strategic plan of spay/neuter, including trap-neuter-return of feral cats.
3. We work toward rabies control by providing rabies vaccination, cooperating with local, district, national and international agencies in employing the most effective and humane rabies control strategies, and by carrying out a rabies surveillance and response program (whereby we are notified of any suspected case of rabies, confirm rabies through field testing, investigate and identify bite victims, and administer post-exposure vaccinations).
4. We promote good human-animal bonds by educating school children about the importance of animal kindness, distributing our story book (written in English and the local language), holding essay and drawing contests which promote compassion, and by administering East Africa's only animal assisted intervention program - The Comfort Dog Project.

We have an exceptionally devoted team of people who have devoted their lives to carrying out our mission. Those who have worked with us have offered high praise, as evidenced by the letters of recommendation posted on our website. We have demonstrated success in mobilizing communities and working well with local and district leaders to carry out our work. We have the support of all government entities and with many international organizations that support and advise us. We have equipment and tools to carry out our work. In October 2015, we were given a grant to build Uganda's first free veterinary hospital on 4 acres of land we own in Gulu, Uganda. The hospital opened in September 2016 and our facilities include recovery and lodging kennels, and a volunteer house. We have developed volunteer exchange programs to help support our work.

To date, we have treated more than 75,000 animals and performed more than 7,500 sterilization surgeries for dogs/cats. Our hospital is open 365 days a year. Our full time staff includes a dog welfare officer, two full time veterinary doctors who live on site, a veterinary assistant, animal caretaker, education manager, community psychologist, and other members. We provide good jobs for our staff, pay all taxes and social security contributions, and provide free health insurance. We have trained dog-guardian teams in our Comfort Dog Project and program graduates now serve as community dog rescue officers, home check officers, field educators, mentors, and dog trainers. Historically, we have offered our services in Gulu and Omoro Districts and the health and well-being of animals in these areas has improved greatly. We need to continue to serve these areas but also to better serve Nwoya, Amuru, Oyam, Amuru, and Pader Districts, where tens of thousands of companion animals go without any rabies vaccination or veterinary services of any kind, and education is needed in the community to improve animal welfare.

Financials

The Big Fix
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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

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

The Big Fix

Board of directors
as of 4/13/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Dr. Brenda Forsythe

Orcutt Veterinary Hospital

Term: 2014 - 2016

Brenda Forsythe,

Orcutt Veterinary Hospital

Sarah Schmidt

No Affiliation

Andrea Kennedy

No Affiliation

Kathryn McDonald

AXA Rosenberg Investment Management LLC

Ellie Newcomb

Paradise Ridge Pet Clinic

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? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • 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 03/21/2021

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
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

Disability

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Equity strategies

Last updated: 03/21/2021

Policies and practices developed in partnership with Equity in the Center, a project that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems within the social sector to increase racial equity. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We use a vetting process to identify vendors and partners that share our commitment to race equity.
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • 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.