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PetRescue rallies techy pet lovers to help build a safe future for Aust pets

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One of Australia’s charities is turning to innovative digital measures to disrupt a sector and save 100,000 lives.

PetRescue is creating a first of its kind digital event for the animal welfare sector which it hopes will ultimately bring about systemic change.

This month, PetRescue announced two online Hackathon events with help from global leaders in tech, Google, to be held this September.

Both events are designed to bring together groups of skilled professionals with diverse skill sets and perspectives to solve problems within a set time limit, using technology as an enabler.

Participants from organisations across a wide range of industries including tech, manufacturing, retail, education and advertising will be given the challenge of saving 100,000* pets.

It’s estimated that 100,000* healthy pets are killed in council pounds and shelters each year. Most are never given the chance to find a new home. PetRescue is calling for the brightest minds in tech to bring fresh ideas and create prototypes to help solve this issue.

PetRescue co-founder Vickie Davy says, “New creative thinking and innovation is needed. Community expectations for the care and wellbeing of homeless pets has completely changed in the last 25 years, but legislation and an outdated animal management system have not.”

Volunteer rescue organisations do an incredible job saving at-risk pets from council pounds, Davy said and often at great cost to their own livelihoods. But they just don’t have the capacity to take in another 100,000 pets.

“It’s time to shake things up and look at the entire system with fresh eyes and a new perspective. That’s why we’ve invited passionate people from all sectors to come together for our 2020 Hackathon for pets,” she said.

PetRescue has pivoted in order to urgently launch the event. General Manager, Patima Tantiprasut, says that the timing is crucial due to the recent record-breaking levels of interest in pet adoption during the pandemic.

“With demand for rescue pets soaring, the time for the hackathon has to be now. While the number of pets looking for new homes is at an all-time low, we have the rarest of opportunities to fast-track our work to break the cycle at the system level,” says Tantiprasut.

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