by Taylor Waldon
Every two years, PAWS of Coronado hosts a Canine Mayoral Election to help pets in need get the care they deserve. In 2020, the Pandemic makes this campaign a little different than years past.
Gus, the 2018 Canine Mayor winner, has reached the end of his 2-year term in office. Now, Coronado (located in San Diego, California, US) is looking for a new Canine Mayor.
This is one of our favorite virtual fundraising events of all time. We’re happy to see it go on for another successful year. It’s even more encouraging to see this campaign help alleviate some of the stress the pandemic has put on our local communities.
How PAWS Pivoted their Mission and Messaging in the Face of the Pandemic
Let’s address the elephant in the room. We’re in the middle of a pandemic. Typical fundraising isn’t available right now. Face-to-face events and programs are cancelled in most places and nonprofits are finding that they’re needed in different ways than before. PAWS of Coronado is no exception.
They recently launched a program called “PAWS Helping PAWS,” to help community pet owners during the COVID-19 outbreak. If pet owners become too ill to take care of their animals, PAWS helps provide care for their pet until they recover.
PAWS will provide temporary housing and coordinate foster families as needed to make sure all pets are cared for and loved until pet owners can do so themselves. There is an application and checklist on our website and we can be contacted at 619-522-7371 or firstname.lastname@example.org.”
It’s no surprise that pet adoptions have also been put on hold for the safety of everyone. That means the overall number of animals in the care of PAWS will increase somewhat indefinitely while the pandemic continues. More animals requires more funding.
If people are interested in one of our animals they can still connect with our Adoption Teams to learn more about the cat or dog and discuss options for adopting as the public health restrictions are lifted. The animals in the Coronado Animal Care Facility are being well cared for by essential staff and volunteers.”
Due to the changes in programming and the public’s focus on the pandemic, PAWS struggled with the decision to hold the election this year.
Was it something that the public would receive well? How would it look to raise money while people are being impacted by the Pandemic in unknown ways?
How the 2020 PAWS of Coronado Canine Election is Different from 2018
To gauge public opinion, the staff at PAWS of Coronado reached out to participants. They found a lot of enthusiasm for the election, so they moved forward with voting on 1 April 2020.
Whereas before the funds raised through this election went to a specific medical care fund, this year, the campaign benefits the entire mission of the organization.
Funds raised during the Canine Mayoral Election will benefit PAWS of Coronado’s overall mission to provide care and medical services to the stray, abandoned, and relinquished animals of Coronado, as well as finding them forever homes throughout our communities.”
So far, the virtual aspect of the election fundraiser has been mostly the same. The biggest difference is that they have twice the number of registered “caninedidates” as before. In 2018, there were 6. This year, there are 13.
The Canine Mayoral Campaign also usually ends with an in-person inaugural event. Due to the advisory to refrain from holding public gatherings, this event needed to be postponed to June. As a result, PAWS decided to extend voting until the end of May to end voting closer to the inauguration.
GiveWP is Flexible Enough to Fit Any Virtual Fundraising Event Idea
We talked all about how the PAWS Canine Mayoral Campaign is powered by GiveWP on WordPress in our last Give Story about this cause. But, we didn’t tell you how easy it is to adapt GiveWP to almost any virtual fundraising event.
Between the form grid, donor comment wall, and our plethora of add-ons, you don’t even need a developer to help you customize your campaign. If you want to do more with GiveWP, it’s also extremely extensible for developers.
Get more virtual fundraising ideas from our article “12 Online Fundraising Ideas for 2020.”
Join the GiveWP Community
We follow the Coronado Caninedidates through the years for a few reasons. First and foremost, they’re Givers! We love the causes using GiveWP and try our best to keep up with as many as we can.
Secondly, they’re a short drive across the Coronado Bay Bridge from our headquarters office in San Diego. We love dogs and we’re hoping to attend this year’s inauguration.
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