Congratulations to Yolanda Morris, Winner Of IDA's Guardian Award
Yolanda Morris was blessed with parents who had a soft spot in their hearts for animals. At the age of five, when she invited a wayward cat into her garage, making the feline a bed and giving her food, Yolanda’s parents didn’t deter her. When this kitty gave birth to two kittens soon thereafter, she helped care for the feline family and found the kittens homes with close family and friends. At that time no one in her family was aware of the plight or sheer volume of homeless animals.
It wasn’t until 20 years later that Yolanda entered the world of animal sheltering and had her eyes opened to the great need for animal protection. It was there that she found her place in the world. For over ten years she worked with private rescues, animal hoarders, large scale animal shelters, animal disaster response teams and countless dedicated individuals, together trying to save one life at a time … and then another, and another after that.
Over the years she continually thought about the root cause of why there were so many dogs and cats being relinquished to shelters, and often put to death. Working within animal shelters and rescues she saw the day-to-day work to care for and give the best chance at a new life for every dog and cat coming through the doors. Seeking a solution to this ongoing problem, she co-founded Pawsitive Alliance in 2005 with Andrea Logan, a fellow animal rescue veteran.
Pawsitive Alliance’s mission is to help end the euthanasia of adoptable dogs and cats in Washington State by increasing adoptions, supporting spay and neuter programs, and making adoptions permanent. Their focus is to eliminate animals being relinquished to shelters because of unplanned litters or behavior problems, and to increase the number of animals leaving shelters alive through a three-fold approach of spay/neuter, adoption, and education. At their large-scale adoption events, where multiple animal shelters and rescues are present with adoptable animals, hundreds of prospective adopters excitedly wait in line to have their chance at meeting their new best friend. As the new animal guardians leave with their no- longer-homeless dog or cat, they often share with Yolanda what the adoption means to them. “It is a reminder to me that we are in this work not only to save animals’ lives, but we’re also saving many human lives as well,” she said.
Yolanda shares her home with two dogs - Leah and Lucas. She says, “I saved their lives but they have also forever changed my life for the better.” Thank you Yolanda for being an outstanding Animal Guardian and being a partner in the protection of homeless animals.
For more information about IDA's Guardian Campaign, visit www.guardiancampaign.org.