Paws With A Cause

aka PAWS   |   Wayland, MI   |  https://www.pawswithacause.org/

Mission

Paws With A Cause enhances the independence and quality of life for people with disabilities nationally through custom-trained Assistance Dogs. PAWS increases awareness of the rights and roles of Assistance Dog teams through education and advocacy.

Ruling year info

1981

CEO

Ms. Michele Suchovsky

Main address

4646 South Division

Wayland, MI 49348 USA

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Formerly known as

Ears for the Deaf

EIN

38-2370342

NTEE code info

Human Services - Multipurpose and Other N.E.C. (P99)

Animal Training, Behavior (D61)

Services to Promote the Independence of Specific Populations (P80)

IRS filing requirement

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

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Each year we recieve more applications for assistance dogs than we can meet. The need for assistance dogs, which provide confidence, independence, and dignity for our clients with disabilities, is as immense as it is varied. Our dogs serve clients with a wide variety of conditions, from Autism to Multiple Sclerosis to POTS. Each dog is custom-trained to fit seamlessly into a client's life, and for many of our clients their PAWS Dog means the difference between being unable to leave their home and being able to go to work or school full-time. The dogs ease the concerns and tasks for caregivers and family members, and are a constant source of comfort for our clients, their families, and their friends.

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?

Assistance Dog services

Paws With A Cause enhances the independence and quality of life for people with disabilities nationally through custom-trained Assistance Dogs.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities

PAWS increases awareness of the rights and roles of Assistance Dog teams through education and advocacy.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities

Where we work

Accreditations

Assistance Dogs International Inc. 2016

Affiliations & memberships

Assistance Dogs International (ADI) 2016

Independent Charities of America 2017

Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Alliance - Organization 2017

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 volunteers

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

People with disabilities

Related Program

Assistance Dog services

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Volunteers host Breeding Stock Dogs, raise future Assistance Dogs, and train dogs in prison to become future Assistance Dogs. All volunteers provide highly valuable resources to support our mission.

Total number of volunteer hours contributed to the organization

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

People with disabilities

Related Program

Assistance Dog services

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Volunteer hours from our Breeding Stock Hosts, Foster Puppy Raisers, Prison Partners and office volunteers. (These numbers do not reflect the 24-hours of supervision given to dogs in the home.)

Number of new donors

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

People with disabilities

Related Program

Assistance Dog services

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Average number of dollars given by new donors

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of clients served

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

People with disabilities

Related Program

Assistance Dog services

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of briefings or presentations held

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

Education and Advocacy

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

PAWS promotes awareness through education and delivers presentations about Assistance Dogs across the country.

Number of individuals attending briefings and presentations

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

Education and Advocacy

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

These individuals were at a PAWS presentation, Expo show or convention where PAWS representatives delivered an educational talk about Paws With A Cause and Assistance Dogs.

Number of overall donors

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

People with disabilities

Related Program

Assistance Dog services

Type of Metric

Input - describing resources we use

Direction of Success

Increasing

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.

Our three year strategic goals are:
1: Build a solid foundation of sustainable canine resources to support the successful placement of a minimum of 100 client/dog teams annually.
2: Successfully conclude the transition to a philanthropic fund development model to support annual revenue objectives.
3: Redefine and align organizational strengths to effectively and efficiently meet our client needs.
4: Target educational and marketing efforts to strategically support the organization's needs and mission.

Some of our strategies to support our goals are:
- Match staffing and training needs to meet increased output.
- Research and implement the use of other breeds as Assistance Dogs.
- Educate and engage all staff on philanthropic fund development model.
- Align talent of the Board of Directors with organization's philanthropic needs, encouraging an active, participative role.
- Build relationships with donors to increase their engagement and level of giving.
- Conduct qualitative and quantitative an analysis of services provided to clients.
- Determine and implement best use of organizational resources, based on results of the analysis, to best serve and support our clients.
- Evaluate implemented steps to measure effectiveness.
- Define current and ongoing organizational needs.
- Utilize appropriate tools to communicate the message and measure outcomes quarterly.

Our greatest assets are people ~ staff, volunteers, clients and donors, who support our mission and goals. In providing services to people with disabilities, we must recognize our canine assets as well; dogs who are lovingly raised in volunteer homes and custom-trained by expert trainers to assist people in fulfilling their goals of independence.

We measure progress one client story at a time. Each client success story is a testament to the processes and procedures that are in place, covering everything from paperwork and canine health care to placement and field training. Challenges are lessons yet to be learned!

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 shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    Adults with disabilities, children with autism, and facilities like schools, hospitals, and inpatient treatment centers.

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

    Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person), Case management notes, Routine and frequent follow up with all service dog teams in the field by HQ staff and local reps.,

  • 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 strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    During the pandemic our Deaf/Hard of Hearing clients reached out to let us know that they were frustrated with mask designs that covered people’s lips. PAWS routinely makes and distributes custom adaptive equipment for our clients, so our R&D lab designed and sent out face masks with clear plastic panels for our lip-reading clients and their families.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    Our organization has long prioritized keeping communication open with each of our service dog teams in the field, as one of our mission objectives is a commitment to support for the lifetime of the team. This involves everything from ensuring that each team’s Assistance Dogs International (ADI) certification is renewed every two years, updating a dog’s training when their client’s life changes, to providing new adaptive equipment for school, work, or home as needed.

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

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

Paws With A Cause
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Operations

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

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • 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.

Paws With A Cause

Board of directors
as of 4/13/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Ms. Jane Hoggard

Anne Barea

Greg Bonner

Christina Elmore

Molly Koroleski

Janey Ladd

Val Lego

Bart Merkle

Sara Osterman

Chris Pucci

Faye Richardson-Green

Adam Russo

Dave Smith

Amanda Boyd

Toyia Turner

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 3/10/2022,

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
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 12/28/2021

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

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • 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 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 seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • 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.