We are all ONE. At Big Cat Rescue we know that everyone and everything is interconnected. If you have permission to be on this site, then it means we believe that you will remember that everything you do and say is not only a reflection of who we all are, but has a direct impact on each of us and especially on the cats. They can sense your mood and they are captive here to the feelings of everyone who comes onto the property. If you are making your fellow Big Cat Rescuers and the public feel loved, safe and as if they really matter, the cats will experience that every day of their lives here. It is the greatest gift you can give them and you will find that it enhances your life too.
While we are all one and all equal in our commitment to the cats we do recognize the need for structure so that everyone is clear on who they report to and who they can go to with their grievances.
Interns, Trainees, Partners and Keepers report to the Coordinator on duty. Sometimes that is a Staff member, sometimes that is a volunteer they have assigned to that role (Green Shirts or Master Keepers), and sometimes that is a Level 5 Intern.
When you enter the property you announce your arrival by radio and find the Coordinator on duty to get your job assignment.
The Staff, including the paid Coordinators report to the CEO (Carole) when they are on site in their role as staff. When they are working as Volunteers, they report to the Coordinator on duty, who reports to the Operations Manager (or to the Operations Manager Assistant, or to the CEO in the absence of the Operations Manager.) AdvoCats report to the person who has taken on the task of managing AdvoCats who is either a Partner or Keeper.
The Volunteer Committee sets Volunteer policies, creates classes, promotes and tracks each Volunteer’s progression through the program, awards promotions, and works as the voice of the Volunteers. If Volunteers have a problem with other Volunteers, their Coordinators or the Staff, they are to address those problems in writing to the Volunteer Committee. The President chairs the Volunteer Committee and reports to the CEO. From there the CEO will handle those issues that involve Staff (in their Staff roles) and the Volunteer Committee will handle Volunteer issues (even if the person involved is Staff, if that person involved was working in their Volunteer role.) The CEO updates the Board on the overall success of the sanctuary.
This system of checks and balances is to insure that everyone is treated fairly and with dignity and respect.
The Volunteer Committee
The Volunteer Committee is comprised of representatives from different levels and branches of the volunteer program and oversees the daily operations of the Volunteer Program and its members. They serve one year terms, with option to renew for a second year. As seats are vacated, volunteers are encouraged to apply if the seat vacated was by a member of their same shirt level and program side (Keeper or Partner) The existing Committee will vote on the applicant.
Mission Statement: The mission of the Volunteer Committee at Big Cat Rescue is to empower our volunteers to provide a safe haven of quality care to our rescued cats according to the highest standards established by the sanctuary, and to empower them to motivate others to speak and act in accordance with their highest motivations towards exotic cats and all of the wild animals with whom we share this world.
Vision Statement: Big Cat Rescue maintains a healthy pool of volunteers who are safe around the cats, sufficiently knowledgeable about their care, knowledgeable about a broad range of issues regarding wild animals both in captivity and in the wild, enthusiastic about our mission, confident in achieving the mission and communicating it to others, and confident in helping each other and our supporters achieve our mission.
Ends Statement: Big Cat Rescue’s volunteers provide care for our rescued cats peacefully, efficiently, and joyfully, and are discovering fulfillment in their experience as they develop their unique contributions towards our organization’s measurable proof that we are achieving our mission.
The Volunteer Committee’s Approach: We achieve our mission through a commitment to communicating skillfully and positively, excellent training courses, positive encouragement, and constructive feedback. We are committed to the notion that each and every volunteer should know his/her exact status in our program, the reasons for that status, and the specific steps that need to be taken for him or her to move forward and grow with the program. We appreciate every hour that our supporters give to our cause and therefore support and welcome a wide variety of volunteer contributions.
If you have a problem with any volunteer member, that you can not resolve amicably yourself, please report it in writing and place it in the Volunteer Committee folder or email it to Committee@BigCatRescue.org
Volunteer Committee duties may include; Interviewing new volunteers and interns, scheduling new volunteers for their first day, maintaining files on each current volunteer, training volunteer and interns.
Writing standard operation procedures & Volunteer Program and class revisions.
Attending Committee meetings to discuss issues concerning the volunteers, disciplinary actions, promotions and rewards within the volunteer program.
Routinely checking and responding to emails to Committee@BigCatRescue.org.
Hosting monthly Volunteer meetings for all volunteer levels to discuss updates and news involving the Volunteer Program and the animals at Big Cat Rescue.
Keeping in touch with volunteers, recognizing birthdays, following up if a leave of absence is taken, and fostering relationships between volunteers.
Attending off-site classes or seminars to further improve operations
Volunteers are encouraged to offer suggestions, ideas, questions, and even grievances to the Volunteer Committee. These must be submitted in writing and may be either placed in the Volunteer Committee folder or emailed to Committee@BigCatRescue.org
Volunteer Committee Members are listed here: https://sites.google.com/a/bigcatrescue.org/volunteer/dashboard-1
Email all at same time at Committee@BigCatRescue.org
It is our goal to have every aspect of our volunteer force represented so that we consider all of the special implications that come with each area of our work.
Private Volunteer Committee Site
The staff are typically hired from the volunteer pool and are paid to do the jobs that people will usually not do full time for free, such as Administrative and Managerial duties. There are hundreds of people who will give up their free time to clean cages, feed cats and do animal care work with big cats so we make the most of our donors money by utilizing these terrific volunteers instead of paying staff to do those things. Sometimes you see staff working with the cats, but that is done on their volunteer time and not on their paid time.
The Staff’s goal is to provide the best care possible for our cats and to end the causes of abuse that result in cats needing sanctuary. To make the most of our donations, the Staff’s role is to recruit, train, encourage and reward Volunteers so that the “lion’s share” of the work is done for free. Their success is measured in how well they can run the operations with the least administrative expense.
Staff and Independent Contractors are listed here: https://sites.google.com/a/bigcatrescue.org/volunteer/dashboard-1
If you have a problem with any staff member, in their role as staff please report it to the CEO Carole Baskin at Carole.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org 813.493.4564
Private Staff Site
Carole Baskin Carole.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org
Mary Lou Geis MaryLou.Geis@BigCatRescue.org
Jamie Veronica, Chairman Jamie.Veronica@BigCatRescue.org 813.493.4564
Pam Rodriguez Pam.Rodriguez@BigCatRescue.org
Howard Baskin Howard.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org 813.505.5565
Lynda Licht Lynda.Licht@BigCatRescue.org
Private Board Site
CEO: Carole Baskin Carole.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org 813.493.4564
President: Jamie Veronica Jamie.Veronica@BigCatRescue.org 813.493.4564
Treasurer: Howard Baskin Howard.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org 813.505.5565