Since its inception in 1908 as the Washington Humane Society, the Federation has had a positive impact on hundreds of thousands of people and animals.
During the early 1900s, animals and animal issues received little attention and/or funding in Washington. The Federation was formed to provide animal agencies professional support, the opportunity to train and network together, and to promote the best practices the animal welfare.
A milestone event for the Federation was the Mt. St. Helens eruption in 1980. Members established an Emergency Fund for animals impacted by the event. The fund continues today utilizing the seed money from the disaster. Funds are used to assist member organizations grappling with disasters such as ice storms, wild fires, and flooding; and also to assist shelters in need.
In 1983, The Washington Animal Control Association (WACA) was formed as a separate membership organization for animal control officers. WACA offers training to help protect animal welfare and public safety and best practices for professionals.
In subsequent years, the Federation has worked with the state legislature to promote public safety, prevent animal cruelty and curtail puppy mills, as well as increasing veterinary services available in underserved communities. This advocacy continues today.
The Federation is a collective voice dedicated to humane treatment of animals in Washington State through legislation, training, programs and support services. Current member organizations are listed on the website: http://www.wafederation.org/directory/ .
The Federation is governed by an elected, volunteer Board of Directors representing 13-15 member organizations. Paid staff includes a part-time Programs Administrator. The Board includes several committees, including: Professional Development, Executive, Legislative, and Marketing/Membership. Financial reports are shared monthly by the Treasurer with the full Board of Directors and include outside professional financial review. The current board is listed here: http://www.wafederation.org/board-of-directors/ .
The face of animal protection has changed for the better, especially over the past two decades as we have strived to eliminate euthanasia of healthy and medically treatable pets, locally, regionally and nationally and help community members with resources to keep their pets.
Check out the Historical Timeline to see the many milestones in Washington Animal Welfare: