MICHELE'S RESCUE REVIEW
This complaint was posted on NAS on 21st Feb, 2022 and is a permanent record located here: https://www.nameandshame.com/michele-s-rescue-5YORP/treats-fosterers-poorly-disorganized-id5ye8j .
Treats Fosterers Poorly, Disorganized
I fostered for Michele’s Rescue for a while and although it’s rewarding work, the people made us quit. They would chastise you if you were unable to foster a pet from each shipment (whether you were upfront about it or sudden life circumstances made it so you were unable). They constantly needed more fosterers because the turnabout for fostering was high- after fostering with them once or twice, I feel like most people quit because of the way Michele’s Rescue representatives treated fosterers and spoke to them. And even if you stuck around for a while, they still treated you quite poorly- after fostering several dogs over the span of a few months, we turned down a dog because of a current situation with our pet and they sent us an unwarranted harsh message and removed us from the page, and we are aware we aren’t the only long term fosterers with this treatment- they would go to remove anyone who couldn’t constantly foster, really alienating a significant amount of fosterers who were only able to participate an average amount of time. I made the mistake of recommending Michele’s Rescue to my friends who signed up, read the material, and signed on for a dog only to find out they were unable to take that specific breed of dog (due to antiquated renting rules) and notified the rescue within 24 hours of their commitment in a very professional manner- the rescue representative instead sent them a very unprofessional response of anger and then attempted to convince them to still take the dog even though they were clearly physically unable to do so. And since their treatment of their volunteers was so poor and did not foster a desire to continue to work with them and eagerly help, they would often rely on guilt to encourage people to volunteer, directly telling people if they didn’t take in animals that the animal was going to die, causing a lot of volunteers to feel a commitment and often take on a lot more responsibility than the rescue should not have placed on volunteers. Of course all the volunteers are working towards saving animals and we’re all very passionate about the cause and the work, but they strategic use your empathy as a manipulation tactic to take on more work than just fostering dogs, things that any other non profit would most likely have staff do.
They would also continue to work with shady rescues that often sent the animals with sicknesses, worms, and under false pretenses, and after several puppies died from Parvo due to the neglect of this “rescue” that was completely preventable, Michele’s Rescue swore they would stop working with them- only to still be working with them to this day, with continuing problems and health treatments. And the rescue would often deflect and problems with the animals, either blaming the other “rescue” they work with or even blaming the fosterers themselves for issues clearly out of the fosterer’s control. Not only that, but other technical aspects seem to always be disorganized, whether that is picking up dogs, schedules, communication to volunteers, even information about the animals themselves- there have been several times where information about the animal was grossly inaccurate and they once “lost” a van full of animals for two days, and although that was not the direct fault of Michele’s Rescue, it is a reflection of who they continue to choose to work with. Many things I or other new fosterers experienced that was completely unacceptable was explained with “it’s not always like this” or “this is a unique circumstance” and we of course responded with empathy for the situation- but after a while you realize that these are not isolated and there are issues that they continually cease to address.
I’m aware of other issues and “drama” within the non profit group, but that is more social politics than the professional and is not something I’ll include in this review- I’ll just say that social politics can also play a huge part in your experience, and there is constant drama, but I could honestly not speak on because we ignored that aspect of fostering and focused on the animals. I just spoke on the situations related to my experiences that reflect the organizations character and what you may experience while working with them. Overall, they are often rude, unprofessional, and the whole organization seems disorganized because they try to take on more than their organization can handle. It is rewarding work to help these animals and the actual act of fostering is wonderful, but working with this rescue can really challenge you, your boundaries, and your capabilities.