Woofstock Fest

Organization Information:

Organization Name:
SPCA of Southwest Michigan
City & State:
Organization Website:
Organization's Mission Statement

We are dedicated in reducing the number of healthy, adoptable cats and dogs destroyed each year in local animal control facilities. Each animal we adopt has received extensive medical care including a spay/neuter surgery. We are dedicated to reducing animal overpopulation through spay/neuter.

Submission Information

Impact Essay

At the SPCA, we are constantly struggling to find forever homes for countless rescued cats and dogs. The challenge can be overwhelming, especially at an organization that is run almost entirely by volunteers. However, we are still able to see the joy in having these animals touch our lives day in and day out. No matter what struggles our organization must face, each of us sees the value in making life better not only for a pet, but also for the owners who take them in.

This year, we decided to celebrate that special bond between pet and owner by having a festival in downtown Kalamazoo, Michigan. The festival -- aptly named "Woofstock Fest" -- is intended to provide a fun activity for the WHOLE family: pets included! Food and entertainment will accompany several fun events at Woofstock Fest, including dock jumping, “Mascot Heaven,” doggie daycare, agility competitions, and an arts and crafts show. We hope to spread the joy of pet ownership by welcoming animals and their owners to an entire day of fun and togetherness.

Vicki Vandenberg – the driving force behind Woofstock Fest and a board member for the SPCA of Southwest Michigan – decided to use Tech Soup to obtain Microsoft Office Project Professional 2007 in order to better plan for and organize this important event. The purchase turned out to be a very wise decision, as it has made the planning of this event so much easier. To quote Vicki, “I use project professional to organize my thoughts and think logically about every step that needs to get done. When I’m done, I can see visually (at a glance) what my priorities are. I can communicate clearly to my team what’s going on in the big picture, as well as their jobs and what needs to be done.” This has undoubtedly been a huge factor in the rapid growth of Woofstock Fest. With the event less than two months away, Woofstock Fest is geared up and ready to go. Teams of volunteers have been assembled, with communication easily linked through Project Professional. Finances have been sorted out, and the different activities for the event have been assigned and scheduled. It has made many volunteers’ lives easier in their efforts to plan such a large scale event.

It is impossible to really illustrate the effects that this product has had on Woofstock Fest. For us, it is easy to see that working with such an advanced yet easy-to-use product has clearly helped to organize one of the biggest events we have ever held. Our tiny office is crammed with several volunteers, slightly outdated computers, and – of course – the chaos of cats and dogs. Much of the work to plan has to be done from different households with an array of helpers. It is crucial to have the central piece of Project Professional because it allows all of the people working on this event to communicate easily about what needs to be done and how it is going to happen. It has most certainly helped to organize this event, which began as a small idea and has grown into a full-scale event in a short amount of time. Fortunately, we have Microsoft Project to help us continue to make this a successful event.

The SPCA was able to get Project Professional for only $40 – a savings of well over $900. As a small, local nonprofit, we would have never been able to purchase such a product at full price. Tech Soup helps smaller organizations like ours to succeed by providing these great Microsoft products at a very affordable rate. However, the impact of this discounted product is not only financial – there is a greater good that comes from having the right tools. We know that by creating a more organized event with volunteers who are all on the same page will help to get the word out about Woofstock. From there, we will have more and more people who will plan to attend. Ultimately, that means more people who will be exposed to our mission; more families who have an opportunity to bond with their pet and with one another; and maybe even more pets who are rescued from our shelter. When all is said and done, we know that the impact of this donated project will reach far beyond our pocketbooks.

Submission Category
Optimize Mission Delivery
Project Image
Supporting Work URL