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Bunny Besties

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animal-Related, Animals, Children & Youth, Human Services, Youth Community Service Clubs

Mission: Bunny Besties mission is to provide impactful Animal Assisted Interactions to support the emotional wellness of our community. We provide sanctuary to the rabbits in our program as well as resources and education to rabbit owners in our community. Bunny Besties vision is to be a resource for our community for emotional wellness, stress reduction and education with rabbits.

Results: Bunny Besties has been traveling around our community serving our mission on-site for our partners. Our partners include the University of Minnesota PAWS program, Homeless shelters serving children, libraries, nursing homes, hospice programs, and Minnetonka High School. We have served our partners with 446 on-site visits to their facilities. We have volunteered 8,420+ service hours from our organization into their organizations resulting in serving more that 23,749 community members. We may be a small nonprofit but we are dedicated to our mission and making a big impact in our community.

Programs: Our programs include bringing Animal Assisted Interactions and Animal Assisted Activities to nursing homes, high schools, universities, libraries, and any other local schools or organizations looking for a hoppy experience to reduce stress and bring emotional wellness to their organization. This includes our traveling rabbit agility show, our hoppy hour with our bunny castle and one on one therapy bunny cuddles.

Community Stories

17 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I was introduced to Bunny Besties through their General Store. My bunny Harry had been in the hospital and came home with some of their hay. He loved it so much that he refused all other hay. I asked the clinic where they got it and they introduced me to Bunny Besties. Everyone I have come in contact is so warm, caring and dedicated to the causes of helping those humans and bunnies who have been forgotten or overlooked. Having 2 rabbits have changed my life. With that and the great people and cause, I chose to get involved with Bunny Besties. I must say that I am the lucky one to be involved with such a great organization! Thanks for all you do Jennifer

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Bunny besties is a great organization that strives to serve for the betterment of the community, from the young to the old. Everyone has a place at Bunny Besties and the attention to detail and care the rabbits receive is clear in their interaction with others. Bunny Besties also is fantastic at making everyone feel included and welcomed, and has an atmosphere of fun and happiness.

1 Priscilla B.1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I’ve volunteered at Bunny Besties since its creation in 2014 and I could not be more grateful for my chance to be engaged with Bunny Besties. It’s an incredible organization that has worked hard to support local college and high school students, and nursing home residents. I’ve seen how much joy the rabbits and volunteers bring people and I’m proud to say that I’m a volunteer at Bunny Besties.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I found Bunny Besties while trying to find a good quality source of local hay for my bunny. My bunny often struggles with GI Stasis and I was struggling to find hay that my bunny likes to help prevent this. Jennifer reached out to me and told me about the local hay Bunny Besties has. We tried it with our bunny and she has been obsessed with it ever since. We have not had any other issues with GI Stasis. Bunny Besties is doing amazing work for our bunny community and I am so happy to have found them!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering for Bunny Besties almost four years ago, and I have enjoyed every moment of it! Working with both rabbits and people to create a mutually therapeutic experience is a truly beautiful thing. I have learned so much about rabbits through my time with Bunny Besties, and I hope to continue to use this knowledge as I pursue a career in veterinary medicine.

1 Fallon B.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering with this organization in early 2019, and have kept coming back since. From a volunteer's perspective, the basics are easy to pick up and the love for rabbits is contagious. As someone who frequently cuddles with the rabbits during downtime or when helping take care of them, the rabbits are well taken care of and very well trained. It's always a joy to help out and see how excited people get to see the rabbits run around and hold them, and fulfilling for me since I know I'm helping out it my community. So glad I stumbled into the Hoppy Hour room during UMN PAWS that first time!

-Fallon

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The volunteer work I’ve done with bunny besties has molded me into the person I am today. The amount I have learned, and the joy I’ve been enabled to spread because of Bunny besties is immeasurable. Beyond thankful for the experiences Bunny besties has curated for me and countless others!

-Gunnar J.

1 Erika M.5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering with this organization has been such a journey of personal growth! The director of Bunny Besties truly cares about every person involved in the org and all the people it serves. I have learned so much about the human-animal bond and about how to correctly care for rabbits, and this experience has helped me on my path to become a veterinarian. Bunny Besties has a place for everyone!

1 Diane C.8

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first volunteered with Bunny Besties a few years ago when we brought bunnies downtown to a homeless shelter and read to the preschool children. They loved it.

Later, I visited nursing homes with the bunnies and saw the look of joy on the faces of the residents there.

I have also seen the impact Bunny Besties has on college students and how much it helps them cope with the stresses in their lives.

Bunny Besties has had a huge impact on people of all ages.
Thank you all for all you do.

1 joeydalgo

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My first experience with Bunny Besties was back in 2019 when they came to the University of Minnesota as part of the therapy animals program. It was my first experience interacting with rabbits up close, and it might sound dramatic, but it changed my life! Because of that one intial interaction with Bunny Besties, I started researching rabbits and ended up adopting two of my own! Thank you to Jennifer and her beautiful buns for introducing me to the healing power of these animals. Truly a benevolent organization.

Attached is a picture of me from fall of 2019 with one of Bunny Besties' rabbits!

1 Mackenzie Hanson A.

Board Member

Rating: 5

Bunny Besties changed my life. I was a recipient of Bunny Besties’ programming while a college student struggling with transferring to a big school in a big city with no friends. Bunny Besties immediately welcomed me and gave me a place to destress, a place where I belonged and could make friends. It moved me so much that I became a volunteer and then a board member so I could give back to the community and help others the way I was helped.

1

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I have been so impressed with the thought and care that goes into the care of the animals. The bunnies give so much back to the individuals and groups lucky enough to interact with them. Every effort is put into the well-being of the animals AND the clients.

1 Chandler H.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer with this organization for many years, I can confidently share that Bunny Besties’ founder and director is one of the most passionate people I have ever met. Always dedicated to her cause, Jennifer is constantly thinking of new and creative ways to engage the community in promoting mental health and experiencing the benefits of animal assisted interactions. Volunteers are encouraged to use their unique skills and strengths, and there are many opportunities to explore and learn new skills, as well. I have nothing but positive things to say about this wonderful organization; it has certainly changed my life (and many others) for the better!

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

The care and respect that Bunny Besties shows it’s bunnies, volunteers, and community is admirable! The inclusive culture, created by the executive director, lets volunteers show their authentic selves. This creates a group that is passionate and successful at what they do!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I’ve been a volunteer at Bunny Besties for over a year now and I can’t stress enough how much of an amazing experience it has been. Everyone involved with this organization is wonderful and accepting which made it easy for me to fit right in! I’ve seen huge personal growth in myself as the director is dedicated to helping each one of us excel in our passions. Everyone truly creates such a positive environment which makes the work we do even more impactful. Being able to put smiles on other people’s faces with the hard work we’ve done is extremely rewarding. Volunteering at Bunny Besties has been such a delight and I’m so grateful for all of the amazing opportunities they’ve presented me with. I’m constantly supported and taught skills to aid me in my future. Bunny Besties is truly such a unique and special organization!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a volunteer with Bunny Besties and I have just been amazing at hard work and care put in to this organization. The director goes above and beyond everyday to create the best inclusive environment for the bunnies, clients, and the many young women and men she has inspired and supported as volunteers. Bunny besties hasn’t stopped changing and improving the lives of the rescue rabbits and high school volunteers who grow and learn so much in this inclusive and female lead community, even amid COVID. The work done inspires me ever day to see underprivileged kids, seniors, and students alike smiling and happy with our bunnies. I am so grateful to be able to be apart of this experience!

1 Estelle12

Volunteer

Rating: 5

As a volunteer with this organization, I’ve had a stellar experience! The director and volunteers are uniquely kind and hardworking individuals. The work we do in the community always inspires me with how much happiness and relief it brings people. I’ve worked with the rabbits and at events for almost 2 years now, and have stuck around because Bunny Besties is not only an enjoyable place to volunteer at, but also a place where I have experienced significant personal growth in my confidence, team leadership skills, and compassion. I particularly live it when we work with kids and seniors! All the bunny best to this non-profit!