Dollars and Sense of Sheltering

August 2013 by Nicole Olynk Widmar, PhD

Audience: Executive Leadership

Video Length: 90 minutes

Sheltering isn't just about good intentions. It's about planning and developing programs that have a good chance of keeping animals healthy and happy, as well as maximizing adoptions and lifesaving.

To make that happen, shelter directors and managers need to have a solid understanding of the practical and financial aspects of their programs. They also need to be able to analyze their results to determine if a program is achieving its goals, and what its real costs are.

These are daunting prospects for many in the shelter world. Many organizations see their best ideas go untried, or fizzle out in the early stages because they lack the financial expertise to adequately lay the financial and management groundwork for them.

Fortunately, Dr. Nicole Olynk Widmar has developed a shelter Financial Management Tool that can be used to analyze financial outcomes for shelter programs under different management strategies.

Please join Dr. Widmar and Maddie's InstituteSM as we present The Dollars and Sense of Sheltering: A Tool for Financially Evaluating your Shelter's Programs.

The information presented by Dr. Widmar will include:

  • An introduction to shelter economics.
  • Review of basics including fixed and variable costs/expenses and revenue/income streams.
  • The ins and outs of balance sheets, income statements and cash flow statements.
  • How to identify and understand risk, and manage its financial aspects.
  • Management decisions illustrated with shelter financial tool.

The Dollars and Sense of Sheltering: A Tool for Financially Evaluating your Shelter's Programs is part of an ongoing series of educational programs from Maddie's Institute, the academic division of Maddie's Fund®, providing the most innovative animal welfare information to shelter staff, veterinarians, rescue groups and community members to increase the lifesaving of homeless dogs and cats community-wide.

This course has been pre-approved for Certified Animal Welfare Administrator continuing education credits.

After viewing the presentation, click here to take the quiz and receive a Certificate of Attendance!

Nicole Olynk Widmar, PhD

Dr. Nicole Olynk Widmar is an agricultural economist specializing in farm business management and decision-making. In addition to her focus on agriculture, she has worked to adapt economic and management concepts for use in shelters, ranging from managing flow-through to assessing how alternative practices impact overall shelter performance. Dr. Widmar's research program includes assessments of people's affinity for, and beliefs about the treatment of, companion animals, livestock and wildlife.

She received her A.A.S. from Alfred State College in Animal Science, B.S. from Cornell University in Animal Science, and M.S. and Ph.D. from Michigan State University in Agricultural Economics.

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