SHELTER CHALLENGE FAQ
I'M HAVING TROUBLE VOTING
There may be a number of reasons why you can't vote!
First, check the dates on the Rules page of the Shelter Challenge. Is there a contest going on right now? If so, each user is allowed one vote per day (from 12:01 AM PT to 11:59 PM PT during an active voting period). If there is not an active Shelter Challenge contest going on right now, voting options will not be available.
Once you've confirmed that there is an active contest that you're eligible to vote in, if you still don't see the vote button, you may want to refresh your browser cache. Sometimes, your browser can "cache" information for hours, days, or even longer. Try clearing your browser cache and history. Then shut down your browser (give it enough time to shut down all the way), start it up, and try again.
If none of these measures work, then it's time to contact us, at firstname.lastname@example.org. We ask that you take a careful look at the above before doing so, however. We cannot respond to every single email that comes in.
I CAN'T FIND MY ORGANIZATION
First check to make sure the organization you wish to support is registered. You may have to look up multiple variations of the name; many groups use acronyms or slightly different variations. You may also need to broaden the location for your search; if your organization has moved recently and their Shelter Challenge listing hasn't been updated, it may not show up where you expect it.
If your group really is missing, and is a 501(c)3 or municipal/county shelter that wishes to participate, please ask them to register. Please do not attempt to register an organization if you are not the official representative of that organization; they must decide on their eligibility. If you are the proper representative, go ahead and register.
Remember that there are specific requirements that must be met for an organization to be eligible to participate in the Shelter Challenge. If the organization you wish to support does not meet them, you may not find them in the system.
PHOTO CONTEST QUESTIONS
Why was my photo contest entry rejected?
Entries may be rejected for a number of reasons, but by far the most common reasons are these: either the image did not upload, or there was a duplicate entry. If your entry was rejected, try taking the time to ensure that the image uploads before submitting the entry. Remember that your image must be less than 5 MB in size. If your entry was a duplicate, it wasn't approved because we don't want to dilute your votes due to confusion between the two entries.
I can't find my photo contest entry!
The easiest way to find your photo contest entry is to click "My Account," then click "My Entries." Copy the Submission Name. Then go to Contests, click into the photo contests, and put the Submission Name into the "Entry Name" search parameter. Make sure that the country correct (if you're not sure, select the generic "Country" option), then click "Search." Your entry should pop up!
How do I share my photo contest entry?
You can share your photo contest entry via Facebook or Twitter! Click on your entry. The details box will also contain a Facebook and Twitter share option on the right. Log in to share your picture with the world!
I AM THE OFFICIAL REPRESENTATIVE OF A NEW SHELTER: HOW DO I REGISTER?
Shelter registration is pretty straightforward, but before you proceed, do a quick search to make sure you’re not already in the system. If your shelter already has an account, creating a new one can cause confusion and dilute your votes. (Please note that you must be the official representative of your shelter in order to register your shelter or have access to your shelter's account. If you are not the official shelter-designated representative, you will need to contact the shelter to ask them to register.)
To register your shelter to participate for the first time in the Shelter Challenge, please have the following information to hand:
• A photo to represent your shelter
• Your shelter's full official name
• Your shelter's primary contact email
• Your shelter's mailing address
• Your shelter's tax ID number
• Your shelter's type (Shelter/Rescue),
• Your shelter's approximate operational budget
• Your shelter's IRS classification (501c3, Municipality, or International)
• A brief welcome (1-2 paragraphs) for people to your shelter's page
You will need to create an account with your shelter's primary contact email address. Once the account is created and you're logged in, go to "My Account" on the top right of the page. Then click "Shelter Admins" in the left nav in order to enter your shelter's information. Be sure it saves – after you click “submit,” the public-facing portion should load on your account’s Shelter Admins page. Once that's done, it may take a few business days for your shelter to be approved and activated. Please note that your shelter must be an eligible 501c3 or equivalent organization, and must work with rescued domestic pets, in order to participate.
Thanks for registering your shelter, and for all the work you do for rescued animals!
MY SHELTER'S INFORMATION NEEDS UPDATING
If you are not the person the shelter has designated to act on their behalf in the Shelter Challenge, you will need to contact the shelter to let them know the information needs updating.
If you are the official representative of your shelter, and you've confirmed that the shelter is active in the Shelter Challenge, you can edit the shelter information if your email address is listed as the primary account holder. To edit your shelter information, please log in with the shelter email address. Go to the "My Account" link at the top right. You should then see a menu on the left, at the bottom of which is a "Shelter Admins" link. Click it to see your shelter's page details. If they require an update, please use the "Edit" link on the bottom right which should allow you to access and update the shelter's information. Please note that some fields are required. When you are done, click submit. Wait for the information to finish loading before you leave the page (your browser will indicate when the page is completely loaded) to insure that your changes are saved.
If you are the official representative of your shelter, you have confirmed that your shelter is active in the Shelter Challenge, and your email address is not listed as the shelter's primary contact (you can't reach the page to edit your shelter's info), please reach out to email@example.com for assistance.
MY BROWSER ISN'T WORKING
GreaterGood has made a conscious decision to stop supporting outdated browsers. This became a choice between spending the money on supporting every version of a browser, or giving more money to shelters and rescue groups. We'd rather give more money to shelter and rescue groups. We do support the most recent versions of the top browsers, including Chrome, Safari, Firefox, and Internet Explorer. If you are using an outdated version of any browser, however, your experience on our website may be affected; please consider updating your browser. If you are experiencing regular error messages, our tech team suggests clearing the cache completely, logging out of all pages, closing the browser, and then relaunching the browser.
DO I HAVE TO CREATE AN ACCOUNT?
No. You can still vote without creating an account. However, having an account will let you do more to support your favorite rescue group in upcoming Challenges, including recruiting others and participating in events like photo contests. Also note that there are security restrictions on anonymous votes in order to keep the contest fair. If you are having difficulty voting anonymously, you may wish to consider creating an account.
WHY DON'T YOU JUST FIX IT - WHY DO YOU ASK FOR SCREENSHOTS AND DEVICE INFORMATION?
Problems with a web page can be caused by many things — and we can better understand how to fix it if your email includes some basic information such as the type of browser used and whether or not you were logged into the site when the error occurred. Currently, we show more than 250 combinations of browsers, browser versions, and devices used to access and vote on this site. Unless you tell us which one you're using (browser, browser version, and device), we just aren't able to give you a very specific answer. We will use this information to improve the overall experience of this Challenge website for everyone. Obviously if it is a universal issue, it impacts all groups equally and does not impact just your group. We very much appreciate screenshots if you can take one. It helps our team identify problems more quickly. We do log all reports of issues, even if we are not able to respond to every email sent to us.
WHAT DO ORGANIZATIONS USE SHELTER CHALLENGE GRANTS FOR?
The grants awarded from the Shelter Challenge are restricted to use for care of rescued pets. Past winners have used these grants to pay for medical bills, feed their charges, spay or neuter animals, and to improve facilities housing the pets.
CAN ORGANIZATIONS EDIT THEIR PICTURE AND INFO?
Yes, absolutely! To do so, they just need to be logged in with the user account that their rescue group is registered under. Then edits can be made to the copy and image right on the page!
CAN ORGANIZATIONS WITHOUT 501(c)3 STATUS OR THE INTERNATIONAL EQUIVALENT, AND WHO ARE NOT RECOGNIZED MUNICIPAL OR COUNTY SHELTERS, RECEIVE A PRIZE OR GRANT?
No. Groups who fail to provide the proper documentation as requested by GreaterGood.org will be disqualified as outlined in the rules. This is incredibly important, not only in order to ensure that the grants are being used responsibly, but also to ensure teh Shelter Challenge and everyone supporting it is acting in accordance with the rules, intention of the program, and the law.
IF WE CAN'T REMEMBER THE 501(c)3 NUMBER, CAN YOU GET IT FOR US?
No. US-based groups who fail to provide the proper Tax ID (501c3 number or Municipal Shelter information, available on your annual 990 form to the IRS) at time of registration as requested by GreaterGood.org will not have their listing activated. When you provide that information, and when we have verified it, your listing will be activated. We do recognize that groups outside of the United States have different needs. Let us know if you are located outside the United States and need help with your registration. Please note that all emails concerning a shelter's or rescue group's registration must include the organization's name, physical address, and official email contact information. Emails without that information will be addressed after all others are answered.
WHY ISN'T MY SHELTER ACTIVE YET?
All shelters are verified and activated by our nonprofit partner, GreaterGood.org. If everything was filled in correctly (especially the 501c3 number from your 990 form) and your shelter is eligible for entry, your shelter should become active in no more than 10 business days. It's usually much sooner!
WHERE IS OUR PRIZE?
Please see the Official Rules for details about prizes and prize distribution. Distribution of all prizes is handled by GreaterGood.org.
WHAT IF I DISPUTE THE OUTCOME OF A CHALLENGE?
Contest rules govern the outcome of any challenge. In the case of a perceived discrepancy or dispute, please refer to the contest rules.
I HAVE READ THIS FAQ THOROUGHLY, AND MY QUESTION WASN'T ANSWERED. WHAT SHOULD I DO NEXT?
If you still have questions after reading this FAQ, the contest rules, and other site resources, please feel free to contact our representative at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you're sending a message about a technical issue, be sure to include what type of browser you use and attach a screenshot of the problem if you can. Please note, however, that we may not be able to respond to all emails due to volume. Emails from shelters will receive top priority.
WHY HAVEN'T YOU RESPONDED TO MY EMAIL?
Due to the volume of emails, we are not able to respond to every one. Priority is given to emails coming from rescue groups and shelters who want to register or who are currently participating. If you are an official representative of an organization, please identify yourself and your group in your email for a faster answer.
All emails concerning a shelter's or rescue group's registration or participation in the Challenge must include at minimum the organization's name and physical address. Emails without that information will be discarded if Shelter Challenge team cannot determine the name of the organization.
We cannot answer any questions about "my group" or "that group" without the proper name and location of the organization - imagine someone you've just met asking you, "What do you think of my baseball team?" You wouldn't be able to give a good answer without knowing the name of the team, the league, and the city. We're in the same boat!
If your email is about a problem with the Shelter Challenge, we may be flooded with similar emails and trying to resolve the issue. Keep an eye on the Shelter Challenge site; we'll try to keep everyone updated there.
We also try to respond to new emails asking a question that is not answered in the FAQ or rules. If you send us your opinion about something, we will log it but we may not answer it given the volume of email received. If you send the same email more than once, only one will receive an answer. Emails containing abusive language or threats directed at other participants or administrators of the Shelter Challenge will absolutely be deleted without response; we believe in a productive and respectful dialogue.
THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING YOUR SHELTER!