How your AVMA membership can help fund your hospital’s charitable work

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Has your hospital ever turned away a patient because, as much as you wanted to help, you simply couldn’t cover the expense?

The American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF), the charitable arm of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), has an answer: the Veterinary Care Charitable Fund (VCCF).

The VCCF provides veterinary practices with a simple and effective way to offer low- or no-cost veterinary services to clients facing personal hardships, and to support animals who are injured or rescued from abuse or neglect—even when you can’t afford to.

It’s like having your own in-house 501(c)(3) charitable foundation. It offers a solution that helps ensure that patients get the care they need and your clients don’t have to choose between financial stability and the health of their companions.

Participation is free for all AVMA members. Enrolled practices receive:

  • A listing on the VCCF website
  • Immediate access to the AVMF account in your practice’s name via secure sign-on
  • Online capability to file grant requests for funds
  • A customizable announcement/press release for media
  • A downloadable 8" x 10" poster template that can be customized for your practice
  • Digital “donate” buttons and accompanying text to be used on your website and/or Facebook page

The program works through partnerships with AVMA member veterinarians. Donors, including veterinarians, make charitable contributions to the fund. When participating veterinarians provide care to abused or abandoned animals or to pets of clients facing financial hardship, they can then seek reimbursement grants from the AVMF for the charitable care they provided.

Any reasonable grant request for the provision of direct care for animals will be approved. Contributions can be used for but are not limited to:

  • Good Samaritan situations for abandoned, injured, or neglected animals
  • Support for local rescue organizations
  • Local disaster relief, such as weather-related or other unforeseen situations where animals are at risk
  • Assistance to local animal shelters/enforcement agencies in cruelty cases

People who’ve benefitted from the VCCF include:

  • Victims of domestic violence
  • Disabled veterans
  • Low-income senior citizens
  • Good Samaritans who’ve rescued injured animals

Since the program launch, the number of AVMA member practices enrolled in the program has grown to more than 1,300. Last year alone, the VCCF processed 888 grant applications and made grant reimbursements of more than $300,000 to participating practices that had given charitable care to 1,027 animals who otherwise might not have received care at all.

Find out more at the VCCF website.

Note: This is not a program for pet owners; all requests for financial assistance must come directly from an AVMA-member veterinarian enrolled in the VCCF program.

Photo credit: © iStock/damedeeso