(SCHAUMBURG, Illinois) May 14, 2020—The American Veterinary Medical Foundation (AVMF)—the charitable arm of the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)—today announced the launch of a COVID-19 Disaster Relief Grant program for veterinary technicians/nurses and veterinary assistants funded by donations totaling $200,000 from Hill's Pet Nutrition, Zoetis and the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA).
Many working in the veterinary profession have been affected by COVID-19 and are experiencing financial hardship. Through this grant program, eligible veterinary technicians/nurses and veterinary assistants may apply for a one-time $500 grant to help meet their immediate needs.
"Veterinary technicians/nurses and veterinary assistants play such a critically important role as a part of the veterinary health care team," said Dr. John de Jong, chair of the AVMF Board of Directors. "We are truly grateful to Hill's Pet Nutrition, Zoetis and NAVTA for stepping up to help these dedicated professionals who may be facing financial hardship resulting from job losses, furloughs or reduced hours due to the pandemic."
Eligible applicants can learn more about how to apply for a grant by visiting AVMF.org/CovidRelief for more detailed information on the program.
Giving challenge: An opportunity to help
Inspired by the generosity of Hill's Pet Nutrition, Zoetis and NAVTA, the AVMF is launching a challenge giving campaign with the goal of raising an additional $200,000 to match the $200,000 already donated to help meet the needs of twice as many veterinary technicians/nurses and veterinary assistants impacted by COVID-19. Donations are being accepted at AVMF.org/Donate.
In addition, the AVMF is accepting donations to its existing disaster relief grant programs to help meet the personal and professional needs of veterinarians and veterinary students impacted by disasters, including COVID-19. More information on these grants, and a link to donate, is available at www.avmf.org/programs/disaster-relief.
"Veterinary nurses and technicians are the backbone of the veterinary clinic and an essential part of the veterinary healthcare team in these times of uncertainty and stress," said Dr. Jolle Kirpensteijn, chief professional veterinary officer of Hill's Pet Nutrition US. "We are proud to partner with AVMF to support these wonderful nurses/technicians with this essential relief program and by providing our excellent nutrition products."
"It is critical that we support veterinary technicians/nurses and assistants who are on the frontlines of providing patient care during this unprecedented time," said Dr. Christine Jenkins, chief medical officer and vice president, veterinary medical services and outcome research at Zoetis. "Veterinary care has been deemed an essential service, and Zoetis recognizes the unique challenges facing members of the veterinary support team. We appreciate the opportunity to collaborate with AVMF, Hill's Pet Nutrition and NAVTA to help in this way."
"Many members of our profession have been financially affected through furloughs, layoffs and reduction of hours," said Ken Yagi, president of NAVTA. "We also often depend on secondary jobs and grade schools as a form of child care to make ends meet, which are also affected by the pandemic. We are honored to be joining Hill's and Zoetis in launching the grant which will help blunt these challenges and support the invaluable members of the