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South Jersey Regional Animal Shelter is pleased to announce that it has been certified by Points of Light, the world's largest organization dedicated to volunteer service, as a Service Enterprise! Achieving Service Enterprise certification is a prestigious accomplishment for an organization. In fact, organizations that certify join the top 11 percent of nonprofits
nationwide in volunteer management and organizational performance. Certification signifies that organizations have the capability and management expertise to strategically use volunteers to improve the performance of their organization.
SJRAS completed an extensive assessment, over 20 hours of training and coaching, and an extensive internal planning and change process to better integrate volunteers into our human capital strategy. By achieving this level of excellence and
certification, SJRAS is now better equipped to leverage the time and talent of volunteers and better meet our mission.

Working through the Service Enterprise program has been a game changer for our shelter. In learning how to better recruit, manage and maintain volunteers, the process made us look at our organization from their perspective as well as that of the general public. Our volunteer program now has all the building blocks to further our success in uniting our community to provide homeless pets with the highest standards of compassionate care and positive outcomes ~ Beverly Greco, Executive Director

What does this mean?

It means that SJRAS is now more properly equipped to function within and improve our volunteer program.

In 2020 volunteers dedicated an awesome 93,152 hours of their time making sure SJRAS pets weren't forgotten during Covid lockdowns!

Our Petsmart Adoption Center volunteers spent nearly 1,000 hours caring for the cats on display at the Millville Store. They directly impacted the lives of the 127 cats adopted there.

Kitten Cuddlers offered bottle feeding and TLC to more than 50 orphaned newborns in just the first quarter of the year.

Those orphans and 800 other felines moved into foster homes where they helped new & existing fosters adjust to working from home or providing entertainment for kids who were home from school. More than 150 dogs went into foster care & made sure their fosters were getting fresh air by going for walks and playtime several times each day.

Volunteer drivers, who made transferring pets to our partner shelters possible, drove more than 12,500 miles around the tri-state area delivering fresh starts to more than 1,300 homeless pets.

The grand total of hours also includes the more than 3,000 hours spent helping staff with dishes or laundry, 2,400 hours logged taking shelter dogs for more than 4,500 walks throughout the year and so many other tasks that helped keep our shelter pets happy & safe thru this unusual year.

With the guidance and skills that SJRAS program staff have learned thru the Service Enterprise program, we can't wait to see those numbers continue to rise each year, meaning that, together, we can not only save more lives, but we can save those lives in the most humane ways. Working hand in hand with the volunteers allows staff more time to work on enrichment programs to keep the animals mentally healthy in addition to the medical care and housing they receive. 

Improving our volunteer programs will mean higher participation and retension rates, because our volunteers will be able to take more ownership in their roles, providing them with more input on volunteer positions and how those positions fit into the shelter system. Working as a team, with seasoned volunteers, allows us to continue to improve the conditions for and treatment of the thousands of pets we care for each year. Volunteer hours also mean a HUGE savings in resources - the money we save thanks to our dedicated volunteers time investments can be re-invested into the volunteer program and the shelter infrastructure, which improves the life of each pet that needs us now and in the future.

Research conducted by the TCC Group, a national program and evaluation firm, found that organizations operating as Service Enterprises outperform peer organizations on all aspects of organizational effectiveness, and are more adaptable, sustainable and capable of scaling their work.

The Service Enterprise program is a national change management program that helps organizations gain a greater return on volunteer investment to better achieve their mission. For more information regarding volunteer opportunities with our organization,
please visit our volunteer page today!. For further information regarding Service Enterprise, please contact Points of Light.

Posted in 2021, General Animal News, SJRAS Articles, Special Programs