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The Solutions Summit: Highlights, Inspiring Quotes, & Big Ideas

June 14, 2023, The Association

Thank you to all who joined us on Tuesday for The Solutions Summit—a one-day mini-conference that packed a lot of punch in four expert sessions and two group activities.

The following short takes are just a teaser of what went down. We’ll be expanding on the content shared earlier this week, as well as posting recordings of the sessions. The recordings are free for attendees and members of The Association, and we’ll be in touch to let everyone else know how they can gain access.

“We are well underway in establishing a future vision of animal shelters as social services agencies.”

Dr. Michael Blackwell in his keynote speech at The Solutions Summit

Understanding and accepting that the work we do in animal welfare contributes to the overall health and well-being of our communities is the first step in making change, particularly for lower-income families who lack access to care for ALL members of their family. As Dr. Blackwell encourages, keep on making those connections and collaborating with social services agencies in your communities—including mental health organizations, domestic violence shelters, and organizations that run food banks and low-cost human-health clinics.

Wanna write better job listings? Let AI help. Recruiting and retention expert Tom Erb recommends a software program like ChatGPT. You can also ask ChatGPT to write emails to applicants and edit themselves (“sometimes they get too wordy,” he says) to save you time and get the right people hired.

Owner surrender was a big topic in the Decreasing Your Intakes, Upping Your Outcomes breakout room during the Tick, Tock, Talk networking event. If you are seeing more owner surrenders due to housing concerns and possible eviction, Allison Cardona, CA State Director at UC Davis, Koret Shelter Medicine Program, recommends the resources at HEART LA’s website. “They are doing incredible work keeping pet owners housed and advocating for tenant rights,” she says. The group also offers technical assistance and online training to organizations nationally.

Don’t touch that dial! Jasmin Robinson and Maria Morukian discussed a common pitfall to avoid when advancing DEI. Known as Channel Switching, this occurs when someone shifts the focus of a conversation about race or racism to a topic that is more comfortable or personally relevant. It may involve, say, a speaker trying to relate to a conversation about race in terms of gender, drawing false parallels between the two—in a way that derails the conversation. For more discussion on DEI, join us for the next webinar in the DEI Dozen series, The Power of Inquiry.

Stay tuned for additional learnings from the conference. What was your top takeaway?

About The Association
The Association for Animal Welfare Advancement is a cohort of leaders on a mission to champion, advance, and unify the animal welfare profession.

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