Innovation Showdown Offers $350k Investment for Ideas That Save Animal Lives

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With approximately 1.5 million pets being euthanized in shelters nationwide every year, it’s clear that there’s still much room for improvement when it comes to animal welfare. The 2018 Innovation Showdown hopes to spark lifesaving ideas and support their realization, all in the name of helping furballs in need.

Innovation Showdown was created last year, by the Petco Foundation and Jackson Galaxy Foundation, and had a successful first season. The project was inspired by the entrepreneur reality show, Shark Tank, where contestants get funding for their potentially profitable business idea, but with one crucial difference- the idea in question doesn’t need to bring profit, but rather save lives. In 2017, the $150,000 pot was split between digital shelters concept and a kitten feeding solution called “Mama in a Box.” This year, the foundations are awarding $350,000 to most deserving ideas, and rescue organization all across the country are already brainstorming.

The online submissions are open until February 16th, and the first two finalists will be chosen by a team of judges. However, this year we’ll have an additional finalist spot named Wild Card, where selected ideas will compete for the third prize. All contestants that are chosen will participate in the grand finale that will take place on May 16th, at the HSUS Animal Care Expo. The top contestants will then make their pitches live and on a stage, to a panel of judges from the top animal welfare organizations. Eligible for the contest are non-profit or municipal animal welfare organizations and for-profit companies, provided their idea is to support the mission to save animal lives.

This project is a collaboration between Petco Foundation and other major animal welfare organizations, such as the ASPCA, Best Friends Animal Society, The Humane Society of the United States, The Jackson Galaxy Project, Maddie’s Fund, Michelson Found Animals Foundation, and the WaterShed Animal Fund. This means that the ideas are heard by the best people possible: those who not only have bests interests of animals in their heart but those who really know the nitty gritty of animal welfare operations.

So, start brainstorming and, who knows: maybe you’ll be the person who saves countless furry lives!


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