Talk about someone who knows their calling, that’s Charlotte Liberda. She has been clear about it since birth. Crystal clear.
She is a Senior VP at PM Realty Group (PMRG), a national real estate firm headquartered in Houston. Her calling, however, is rescuing animals, specifically, dogs and cats at almost any cost.
She was born this way. Growing up, she brought home one stray animal after another. Her understanding parents practiced a lot of patience over the years until finally they had to say, “Enough already.”
“It’s not a learned behavior,” Charlotte states. “Not in my case anyway. It was an innate thing. I was born to help the animals.”
She does this and more.
Started as volunteer
Charlotte grew up in the small town of Ganado, Texas and attended college at what is now Texas State in San Marcus, majoring in accounting. After graduating, she landed a job with Arthur Anderson and moved to Houston. On the weekends, she worked as a volunteer at some of the local animal shelters.
Since forming the group in 2007, more than 1,000 animals have been rescued and placed in loving homes. No small feat.
What grew increasingly disturbing to Charlotte was the number of animals being put down in Houston shelters. Approximately 100,000 animals are put to death every year in Harris County alone! In 2007, she decided to do something about this and formed a non-profit organization called RedCollar Rescue, Inc. Since forming the group, more than 1,000 animals have been rescued and placed in loving homes. No small feat.
RedCollar Rescue takes in animals from local shelters as well as those that have been abandoned and found on the street. Charlotte arranges for the rescue to be picked up and driven directly to a veterinarian for a thorough examination called vetting. To learn what this includes go to redcollar.org.
Charlotte reports that their two most important needs are donations to help with the huge medical needs and foster homes. “The more people who open up their heart and home to foster,” she says, “The more animals we could save.”
Finding homes for the rescued
The process of finding a permanent home for these rescues requires more than money and networking. It requires the art of matchmaking as well as lot of boots on the ground business, both of which Charlotte performs with incredible efficiency.
From the get go she plans for success. If you go to redcollar.org and click on their Adoption Application/Contract Forms you’ll see what I mean.
Once a potential adopter fills out the application form and is approved, Charlotte moves the ball forward through some vetting of her own. Here’s how it goes:
- A time and neutral meeting place is set up where the dog and applicant can meet and get to know one another.
- A home visit is arranged. Charlotte brings the dog to the home along with the foster parent who has been caring for the animal since being released from the veterinarian. “Who would know better than these two, right?” Charlotte asked.
- If all goes well, then a trial stay of one week is arranged.
- If everything works out, then they finalize.
There are many “Happy Tails” stories that prove how beneficial these steps are to all parties. “If you put in the time up front,” Charlotte believes, “it pays off later.”
Not surprisingly, few animals are returned to RedCollar.
Adversity doesn’t deter Charlotte from her calling. She keeps her eyes on the prize, the welfare of animals, and continues her work with skill, tenacity, huge amounts of love and know-how.
Along with her job at PMRG and her RedCollar Rescue duties, she’s recently given her time, energy and money toward seeking justice in a dog poisoning case. Her dogs. The accused finally admitted his guilt. His sentencing is scheduled for Friday.
The story is another one altogether, but suffice it to say that aside from the obvious atrocity, one thing is crystal clear.: Charlotte Liberda will be there to see justice served.