About the Conference

The 2017 CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference took place at the Westin Ottawa April 8-11, 2017. As part of the 2017 conference, we marked the 60th anniversary of the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies (CFHS), Canada’s 150th birthday and celebrated our collective power as a community.

The CFHS National Animal Welfare Conference is the pre-eminent venue for thought leadership, sharing of ideas, networking and learning. It is Canada’s only animal welfare industry event that represents the entire diversity of animal welfare leaders in Canada. Whether you work with a humane society, SPCA, animal rescue, advocacy group, animal control, conservation, an academic institution or the government – or are just interested in animal welfare, our exciting conference is the place for you! It will arm you with all the inspiration, information, tools and training you need to help build a Humane Canada on behalf of our nation’s animals.

On Sunday, April 9, we held the CFHS 60th Anniversary Awards Gala at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa to celebrate the animal heroes that dedicate their lives to creating a more humane Canada. We presented individuals and organizations from across Canada with CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership and Innovation Awards for their work in public engagement, corporate social responsibility, farm animal welfare, humane legislation and cooperation in emergency response during the Fort McMurray animal rescue efforts. We also presented Dr. David Suzuki with the Frederic McGrand Lifetime Leadership in Animal Welfare Award for his decades of work for animals and the environment.

The winners of the 2017 CFHS Animal Welfare Leadership and Innovation Awards were:

Public Engagement:
Edmonton Humane Societies

Corporate Social Responsibility:
PetSmart Canada
PetSmart Charities of Canada

Farm Animal Welfare:
Geoff Urton (BC SPCA)
Dr. Ian Duncan (University of Guelph)

Humane Legislation:
Honourable Wilfred P. Moore, Q.C.

Cooperation in Emergency Response:
Alberta Animal Rescue Crew Society
Alberta Spay/Neuter Task Force
Alberta SPCA
Alberta Veterinary Medical Association
Calgary Humane Society
Central Alberta Humane Society (formerly Red Deer & District SPCA)
Edmonton Humane Society
Fort McMurray SPCA
Meika's Birdhouse
Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo

Frederic McGrand Lifetime Leadership in Animal Welfare Award:
Dr. David Suzuki


"My take-away from this conference is more hope. I like that the sessions offer strategic thinking, initiatives, ideas that are outside the box. I wanted to see sessions that I could put into practice."
-Cheryl Albuquerque, artist and independent delegate at NAWC2016

“This was my first year at NAWC, and what interested me about attending the conference was the sense of community, which is not something I have back home. I’m part of the pre-veterinary community at my university but, as for animal welfare specifically, there’s really no one I could turn to at the moment. I broadened my horizons and made connections with other people who are interested in the same things that I am."
-Taylor Nimchonok, Farm Animal Compassion Committee, Winnipeg Humane Society and NAWC2016 delegate

To find out more about the Canadian Federation of Humane Societies, visit our main site here.

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