• Animals for Awareness Animals for Awareness


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Mission Statement

The mission of Animals for Awareness is simple: PROTECTION THROUGH EDUCATION. We truly believe that by educating people about wild and exotic animals, we minimize the risk to and suffering of animals at the hands of people. While we acknowledge that responsible ownership of exotic and wild animals can be achieved by a select percentage of people, we target individuals who may not fall into that small percentage.


Animals for Awareness is a 501(c)(3) non-profit educational facility devoted to exotic and wild animals in need. We hold and maintain a current USDA license as well as several Illinois Department of Conservation permits. Animals for Awareness is a 100% volunteer-run facility which takes in unwanted, abused, neglected or confiscated exotic animals and provides life long care for the permanent residents. We receive animals via zoo referrals, animal control, word of mouth, veterinarians, other shelters, police, and internet inquiries, to name a few sources. Some animals are only temporarily sheltered until a USDA facility more suited for the animal can be located to house them permanently. AFA will often have small domestic critters for adoption to suitable homes, but we do not adopt out or sell wild or exotic animals to the general public. We also do not receive any government funds or grants, and are supported 100% by the public. Although Animals for Awareness is based in Illinois, we have provided services to animals as far west as Oregon and as far east as Long Island, and including most states in between, north and south. No animal is ever turned away because of location, health, age or temperament! All animals receive check-ups and treatment regardless! In the rare instances we cannot help, we find the necessary help promptly. Animals for Awareness offers year-round educational programs that are tailored to suit just about any institution, organization or individual. Attendees learn about each animal present â  their natural histories as well as how they came to live with us. They learn about proper husbandry and natural behaviors of the animals, as well as why the animal does or does not make a suitable pet. Each program is different and strives to provide age appropriate information, from proper handling to species survival and everything in between. In addition, we offer information on the proper keeping of domestic animals. Small children learn lessons about what to do when confronted by a stray or wild animal. Our Pet Therapy programs offer a great deal of positive and uplifting interaction with the elderly, infirmed, and handicapped. We say: Teach well and the audience will hear. In addition to educational programs, Animals for Awareness reaches thousands more people through our printed brochures, website access, phone inquiries, and animal behavior modification assistance. Animals for Awareness also provides federal and state licensed rehabilitation to all native Illinois wildlife including deer and raptors. Approximately 100 animals per year benefit from this service. In the event that an animal is deemed unreleasable, we also have the licenses to permanently house the animal if a reasonable quality of life can be established.





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