|To our dedicated supporters and volunteers, THANK YOU!|
2020 was a great year for Rabbitats in spite of the obvious disasters.
We rescued nearly 200 rabbits from the streets of Richmond with the support of the City of Richmond and Richmond citizens.
Generous donors allowed us to pick up and treat dozens of orphaned, sick, and injured bunnies.
An army of volunteers stepped up to care for the rabbits, which included scores of unexpected babies born during the COVID-19 shutdowns.
Generous veterinarians volunteered their time or gave us great rates. The Cypress Street Animal Hospital gave us over a dozen free neuters and we staged bulk spay and neuter clinics in partnership with RAPS, the BC SPCA and the Apex Animal Hospital.
We moved our infrastructure and technology forward by leaps and bounds – our awesome Board of Directors really got things done!
COVID-19 cancelled our large events and delayed our Bunny Café, but our resilient volunteers were able to bring Meet & Treats to people’s yards, so not all was lost.
2020 saw a grant from the Micro-Sanctuary Resource Center that allowed us to build another sanctuary enclosure. We were also able to build two ‘micro-sanctuaries’ on private properties in Richmond and North Surrey.
Grants from the Richmond Community Foundation and the Animal Welfare Foundation Canada are funding an educational program to demonstrate how humane rabbit control can be accomplished.
|2021 is going to be even busier!|
Rabbitats is looking for a new home! As the organization grows, it needs the stability of a long-term lease and more space for its Richmond shelter and sanctuary. The move will be a huge undertaking in need of a lot of support.
Our Bunny Café, in partnership with Catfé, should be opening in the new year.
Our agreement with the City of Richmond is continuing, and we’ll be looking for partners and sponsors and more donors to treat the sick and injured.
Our aging South Surrey sanctuary rabbits will be moving into ‘a retirement community’ where they can be closely monitored. Younger bunnies will take their place.
Rabbitats will be looking to establish micro-sanctuaries in more locations and foster colonies of rabbits to private citizens.
Advocacy will also be a priority in 2021, and there will be a sharp focus on Research and Education as Rabbitats works on outreach, signs on as a sponsor at the national virtual National Animal Welfare Conference and overhauls our abandonedrabbits.com international mapping project.
The Rabbit Hemorrhagic Disease News Network group, started by Rabbitats, became the go-to news source internationally when 2020 saw the deadly RHDV2 break out in the US Southwest affecting both domestic and native rabbits, a frightening twist. Rabbitats with help from the Vancouver Foundation and a small Community Gaming Grant are exploring the ramifications and developing strategies.
Like the rest of the world we’re hoping to reestablish our many live events to make all this affordable and in the meantime establish alternative sources of revenue including supplies and merchandise sales. We’re anticipating severe COVID-related budget restrictions from funders going forward, so support from donors, volunteers and other ‘civilian’ fundraisers will be more important than ever until funding is back on track.
Our biggest wish for 2021 is for rabbit friends, fans, volunteers, rescue organizations and other stakeholders to pull together and help each other help the rabbits.
As the abandoned rabbit issue grows, the options for humane control shrink. Working at odds is regressive and uninspirational and calls into question the stability of the rescue platform, opening the door to euthanisia and lethal culls.
Cooperation is paramount. It takes a warren!
Founder + President
Rabbitats Rescue Society