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Big News! RAPS Announces New Regional Animal Hospital

Capital Campaign to Create Veterinary Hospital as Heart of Unique Model of NO-KILL animal care

The Richmond Animal Protection Society (RAPS) today announces a capital campaign for the creation of the Regional Animal Hospital. This community-supported, social enterprise veterinary hospital will be open by the end of 2017.

“The Regional Animal Hospital, when completed and accredited by the College of Veterinarians of B.C., will make RAPS financially sustainable by providing social enterprise veterinary care to the animals in our care and providing veterinary services to companion animals of people throughout Metro Vancouver,” says Eyal Lichtmann, CEO of RAPS. The Richmond Animal Protection Society is also reinventing itself as the Regional Animal Protection Society, he adds.

The Regional Animal Hospital will eliminate external veterinary expenses for RAPS, which operates the City of Richmond Animal Shelter and the RAPS Cat Sanctuary — the only one of its kind in Canada and one of the largest in North America.

The Regional Animal Hospital is the final pillar in the creation of an entirely new “RAPS Model” of NO-KILL animal care. When the model is fully operationalized here, it will be shared with NO-KILL animal-serving agencies across Canada and worldwide.

“We believe this model has the potential to revolutionize NO-KILL animal care, saving and improving the lives of potentially millions of animals,” Lichtmann says.

A NO-KILL ethos is at the heart of everything RAPS does. Under RAPS’ care, no animal is ever euthanized due to lack of space, treatable illness, physical defect, or solvable behavioural or socialization issues.

“Contrary to some perceptions, NO-KILL animal care does not have negative financial impacts on an organization,” says Fearn Edmonds, President of RAPS. “A NO-KILL approach reduces staff and volunteer burnout and turnover, while increasing community support and goodwill. The NO-KILL promise RAPS made more than two decades ago is the reason we have become one of the province’s most admired animal care organizations.”

Thousands of British Columbians saw RAPS’ NO-KILL commitment in action earlier this year when we saved the life of Isabelle, a dog that was severely injured in a house fire. While Isabelle’s case was extreme, RAPS saves the lives of hundreds of animals each year who, in other jurisdictions, would be euthanized due to often minor health or behavioural issues.

The “RAPS Model” of NO-KILL animal care will provide a template for community-supported, social enterprise animal care far beyond our existing geographic reach. In addition to providing guaranteed veterinary care, the model includes shelters and sanctuaries, fostering, spaying and neutering, social enterprise and sharing scalable systems. RAPS will codify every component of our model and share it with other NO-KILL animal-serving organizations, because animals know no human-created boundaries. Life and death should not depend on city limits or provincial and state boundaries.

Today, RAPS is launching a $2 million capital campaign to mobilize community support for the new Regional Animal Hospital. We hope to raise half the revenue we need to open the hospital this year through 5,000 contributions of $200 each. This is a testament to our dream of community-supported animal care and is founded on the decades of goodwill RAPS has built among people in Richmond and Metro Vancouver through our work saving and improving the lives of animals. A gift in support of this project will help RAPS open the Regional Animal Hospital this year, but it is a gift that will keep on giving as the RAPS Model is shared across the country and beyond, affecting the lives of incalculable numbers of animals in need.

Full details about the capital campaign are online, as is the capital campaign brochure, which explains the many benefits of this exciting initiative.

We could not be more excited to make this announcement today to share with the people of British Columbia. Please visit our Capital Campaign page to find out more details and be part of this innovative initiative.