Interview! Jim Tedford, President and CEO for the Society of Animal Welfare Administrators, SAWA

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“Our role is to make connections between people who need relief versus the members we know who can provide relief.”

Jim is a returning guest who has been actively engaged in the animal welfare movement for over 30 years. He was involved in the professional association of leaders in animal welfare and control, along with the National Council of Pet Population, a subsidiary of SAWA. More specifics of Jim’s work, check out Episode 199!

Today we discussed SAWA’s experience in assisting the recent hurricane victims across the country. Their main role is to mobilize a network of professionals. Currently, there are around 1,100 members around the U.S. SAWA works to bring them together to provide the help when and where it’s needed.

Work starts before a natural disaster hits, and remains long after for hurricane relief. Another big goal is to make sure people don’t get in the way of themselves and cause more harm than good. Many times organizations offer to help and show up before any requests have been made. This can cause people to get in the way of themselves and create more work than needed.

SAWA is currently working hard to make sure that Texas and Florida are able to provide the shelter space and resources for the animals that have been displaced and have needed rescuing. Jim also discusses how it’s been moving animals from Point A to Point B, as far as paperwork, immunizations, diseases, etc.

Overall, it’s important to note that when dealing with disasters, the real strength is in the network and that is exactly where SAWA shines.

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