Good Example Of Essay On American Humane Association
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American Humane Association (AHA) mission is “to ensure the welfare, wellness and well-being of children and animals and to unleash the full potential of the bond between humans and animals to the mutual benefits of the both” (AHA, 2013). It is a typical non- for profit organization whose philantropic activity is dedicated to defending the rights of the certain groups of the society (children) and the environment (animals).
Non-for-profit organization is one which is established for some general or special philantropic purpose. It neither has any external shareholders nor distributes profit to them. It can have profit from its activities but this profit is called a “surplus” and is not distributed, like dividends in profit sector. Instead, it is directed to conduct the organizational activities, e.g. to provide free-of-charge services to those who cannot pay for them. The non-for-profit organization activities cover those social, cultural, environmetal or health aspects which are not addressed directly or not covered in full through the existing legislation or through the operations of market system. So non-for-profit organisations are called “third sector”.
AHA activities secure the rights of the most unprotected populations in the environment and the society. They encompass several very broad directions. First, it is the protection of the animals’ rights. For this purpose, AHA has been realizing several programs which address the needs of certain animals’ groups. These are as emergency services for animals in disaster (under AHA-owned Red Star ® brand), sheltering and treating the homeless animals (under AHA-owned Second Chance ® brand) and keeping the animal actors safe from the sets of filmed productions (under AHA-owned No Animals are Harmed® brand). Also it has special research programs to identify indicators of animals’ welfare and health, with separate attention to farm animals.
Second, it is protection of children’s rights. AHA is conducting the programs which cover the needs of diverse groups of children. The typical projects are assistance to the children affected by migration (Child Welfare and Migration program), children who are chronically neglected (Chronic Neglect program) and children who grow in the families without father (Fatherhood Initiative program). The most important direction of AHA children’s programs is perhaps the child abuse and neglect prevention, embracing the children from all communities and all populations. AHA Front Porch Project, with a set of effective prevention and intervention measures to assist the abused children and their families, is a program of national scale.
Third, it is strengthening of a bond between people and animals. This direction has not only some emotional or spiritual meaning teaching people to value the animals’ life. It is aimed at maximizing the benefits from humans-animals interaction, such as using animals’ potential in complementary therapies for children with cancer (dog therapy) with the initiation of Canines and Childhood Cancer research study. For the same purpose, AHA provides certified service dogs working with veterans with postraumatic stress disorder. To maximize the benefits animals can bring people and to prevent harms associated with animals’ agressive behaviour, AHA conducts the research on animal behavior and training.
As in every non-for-profit organization, the main source of AHA financing is donations. AHA is highly dependent on the community support. Its revenues are represented in majority by contributions and sponsorships. It also tries to derive maximum benefit from such revenue sources as royalty payments and service fees. Another smaller part of its income is represented by external grants. Fees from seminars, net investment returns and other miscelanneous income constitute the remaining part of AHA support and revenue.
AHA mission is realized through specific operational programs aimed at children’s protection, animals’ protection and people-animal relationships cultivation. As all non-for-profits, it has a public accountability. Realizing this mission, it uses ‘value for money’ indicators to assess the performance against objectives. As the main source of its revenues is public funds, AHA shows to the public the donated funds are used in the most cost-effective way. In terms of economy, it tries to minimize the costs actively attracting volunteers who perform great bulk of AHA activities. Also, it searches for alternative financing sources such as governmental and other grants. In terms of efficiency, it demonstrates an impressive output in all of the directions, e.g. in the number of rescued animals over the last years or in impressive safety rate of animal actors during the films production. In terms of effectiveness, it presents specific achievements such as humane treatment of millions of farm animals or the gas chamber ban for pets in Pennsylvania.
AHA activities facilitate the public interest through the community impact in social, environmental and public health dimensions. AHA struggle against children’s abuse and neglect resulted in the Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovations Act with the specific steps for next years to extend the Child Welfare Services program. Only lately, AHA has provided treatment and protection to millions of animals and conducted hundreds of thousands of visits to children in need. AHA animal-assisted therapy improved the lives of lots of children across the US (both cancer-affected and from veterans’ families). Though all AHA activities are aimed at specific groups of the society, realization of these activities covers the whole range of general public interests such as prevention of children’s abuse or neglect, protection and improvement of the environment, and advancement of public health.
American Humane Association (AHA) (2013). Retrieved from: www.americanhumane.org
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