June 01, 2008


 Nonprofits collaborate on pet memorial program

Posted May 15, 2008

Building on the success of its current Pet Memorial Pledge Program, the American Veterinary Medical Foundation has partnered with Clearbrook, a nonprofit human service agency, to assemble and mail keepsake kits.

The Pet Memorial Pledge Program allows veterinarians to send donations to the AVMF in honor of patients that have died. A keepsake kit, which includes a card personalized with the pet's name, is then mailed to the client within a few days.

Clearbrook, based in Arlington Heights, Ill., offers employment training and placement programs to adults with developmental disabilities, helping them enhance their vocational and social skills. The organization provides highly motivated workforces of more than 300 employees with substantial experience in mailing, packaging, and component assembly.

By sharing the workload with Clearbrook, the Foundation will be able to offer the program to many more veterinarians, said Dr. Robert E. "Bud" Hertzog, AVMF chair.

"This is such a win-win for AVMF and Clearbrook," Dr. Hertzog said. "I firmly believe in our pet memorial program, and anything we can do to expand and enhance it will have far-reaching benefits."

Carl M. La Mell, president of Clearbrook, said, "Clearbrook clients participating in the workshop component of our Employment Services Program are enthusiastic to learn the responsibilities and requirements of this new project. Thanks to the American Veterinary Medical Foundation, Clearbrook can continue to provide a variety of work projects to our adult clients with developmental challenges."

With each new job, Clearbrook clients work with employment services staff to learn new skills, and clients are paid for their efforts with each kit completed.

Established in 1955, Clearbrook creates opportunities for approximately 3,000 children and adults with developmental disabilities. The organization offers specialized children's services, along with day training, employment, residential, and clinical services at more than 40 locations throughout the Chicagoland area.

In addition to helping support the AVMF, veterinarians who donate to the Pet Memorial Pledge Program can help strengthen their relationships with clients and ensure their return with other pets in the future. Pet owners can also make a donation to the Foundation in honor of their pets through the Pet Memorial version of the program.

To learn more about the Pet Memorial Pledge Program or to make a donation, visit the AVMF online at www.avmf.org and click on Honors & Memorials, or call (800) 248-2862, Ext. 6689.