MAE BACHUR ANIMAL SHELTER REACHES OUT TO THE COMMUNITY
SHELTER MAY SHUTTER
After 30 years of operating a humane shelter for dogs and cats, HSY is reaching out to the community for direction and support. The Mae Bachur Animal Shelter in Whitehorse has had a tough year; fundraising events fell short of what was needed, senior staff turned over, and a court case drained resources. Right now there are 10 animals that desperately need vet attention, but the Shelter owes thousands in vet bills already.
Humane Society Yukon takes animals at Mae Bachur from all across the territory. Fundraising, donations and animal adoption fees provide 75% of the funding. Fees charged for animal adoptions mostly go to pay the vet bills for neutering/ spaying and vaccinating them, and don’t cover other costs related to feeding, care, and keeping the doors open 5 days a week. The Shelter provides an essential service in the North, taking in strays from throughout the Territory. Without help to pay the vet bills and keep the doors open for the animals, there will be no choice but to close the Shelter.
To save money, bookkeeping services were replaced by an internal system using Quick Books, and a financial review was waived for a year, which was allowable under the Society's Act. In hindsight, that was a mistake. The members voted down the request from the Board to waive a financial review for 2018-2019.
A bookkeeper has been engaged now to go back and correct errors made in data entry back to 2017-2018 and an accounting firm has been engaged to perform financial reviews up to and including 2019. Also at great expense.
The Board is exhausted. Membership and the community have clearly indicated that they do not trust the operation and decision-making and remain a challenge. The Board appeals to the community to come together and either close the Animal Shelter ; support the Animal Shelter; or reform the Shelter.
The Board is willing to step down and be replaced. They have all indicated that they would support any decision the community and the membership make going forward.
The government has indicated that they would assist with a comprehensive governance, operational and financial audit once the current financial review is complete. YG provides about ¼ of the annual budget to operate Mae Bachur.
A public meeting will be held Tuesday November 26th at 7:00 p.m at the Gray Mountain room at Mount McIntyre. Sophia Fortin will facilitate. This public meeting is not to make any decisions. It is to put the problem forward to the membership and to the community for guidance and direction and leadership.
At this moment, HSY is NOT in good standing with Consumer and Corporate Affairs.
To come into good standing, a Special General Meeting of the members will need to be held. At that time, the results of the Financial Review will be put to the membership for approval. The Board asks that nominations come from the floor for a new Board of Directors.
The current Board is not prepared to continue governing the Shelter in the adversarial climate that has existed for the last couple of years.
In the meantime, HSY has launched a GoFundMe appeal to the community to help pay the vet bills.
The dogs and cats and the Shelter employees anxiously await your decision.
For more information please contact:
Kate Dawson, President firstname.lastname@example.org 633-2013
Carol Oberg, Secretary/Treasurer email@example.com 668-7481