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BFAS Artwork



Championing the Cause of Animal Welfare with Limitless Serverless Technology and a Dedicated Team.

About BFAS

Best Friends Animal Society, founded in its present form in 1993, is an American nonprofit 501 animal welfare organization that drives the nation’s largest sanctuary for homeless animals. BFAS does outreach nationwide with shelters, rescue groups, and members to promote pet adoption, no-kill animal rescue, and spay-and-neuter practices.

They work through an intricate network of over 3700 animal welfare shelters across the country, partnering with organizations along the way to standardize and document shelter information.

With Partnerships from Leading Corporations such as Pawz, CreditOne, and Mini, and Support from Notable Organizations, including Walmart, The Meadows Foundation, and Petco Foundation, BFAS Aims to revolutionize the way the world views and cares for Animals.

The Challenge

BFAS faced a challenge in providing its users with data management and searching capabilities. They needed a portal where users could filter data on fields like the year, month, and data status. This information could be obtained in a report format with data visualizations for easy perusal and quick insights.

BFAS observed that owing to the nature of social work, new organizations would frequently pop up on the radar while older oneswould enter hiatus or turn inoperational. It was essential to embed this information into the system and build an activity status for each branch to filter out outdated or dysfunctional shelters.

Another challenge was to enable collaborations among different stakeholders. They required collaboration rooms where various parties could share information securely and facilitate remote discussions to promote strategic planning.

Our Goals

BFAS partnered with AntStack to architect a serverless solution that could facilitate massive data storage and was designed to provide quick information retrieval while configuring role-based user authentication.

  • Their primary goal was to build a shared platform. In this mega data store, animal shelters, rescuers, and stakeholders across the country can upload reliable information and news to coordinate adoptions and spread pet awareness

  • They envisioned a role-authenticated and automated account-management system where users could be assigned three roles - super admin, organization admin, and users. The admin would have the highest privilege with the control to add, invite, remove and update other users’ access.

  • Finally, BFAS needed a comprehensive dashboard to view user compliance, monthly data, and statistics in a cursory glance. These control would only be accessible to the super admin, and the newly joined organizations would need verification from the super admin, which could be maintained through the dashboard.

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Our Impact

Robust automated user management system

  • AntStack Implements Serverless Technology to Liberate BFAS from resource allocation and server maintenance burden, allowing cost-efficient operations and scalability.
  • Our Solution Eases Data Gathering from Various Sources, Standardizes the Information for Public Use, and Produces comprehensive Statistical Reports Using Tableau’s Reporting Module.
  • The Front-End is Developed Using ReactJS, Utilizing its Native Context API for Effortless Information Sharing Across React Components.

Implementing Role-based authentication

  • Three unique Roles - Organization Admin, Super Admin, and User - were established based on user permissions to ensure secure and controlled access across the platform.
  • Utilizing Amazon Cognito and Amazon Amplify, Users are Authenticated Against Their Assigned Role, Granting Access to Corresponding Settings.
  • Once authenticated, all User Requests are directed to Amazon AppSync, which utilizes GraphQL to efficiently service all queries.

Efficient Data Retrieval with Quick Search Feature.

  • Overcoming the Limitations of Manual Registries for Pet Adoption, Transfer, and Shelter Management, AntStack Implements a scalable solution consisting of two databases - Primary and Secondary - Utilizing DynamoDB as the Primary Data Store for organizing and maintaining data and Amazon OpenSearch for time-sensitive search queries.
  • Data is Initially Stored in an S3 Bucket that triggers a Lambda event to update both Primary and Secondary Databases and React Table Library is used to Implement Search, Filtering, Row-Selection Actions, and Both Client and Server-Side Pagination.

Streamlining Bulk Uploads

  • Overcoming the Inefficiency of Manual Bulk Uploads in a Legacy System, the Solution Implemented by AntStack Enables Bulk Uploads with Files by Automating the Process of Fetching Required Organizations in the Background.
  • Organizations Successfully Fetched are added to the Group, with Amazon Simple Mail Service (SES) and Simple Notification Service (SNS) seamlessly integrated to notify Users of Successful Uploads and provide Information on invalid Organizations in the event of unsuccessful uploads.

Optimizing Data Search

  • Addressing Inefficient Searching Methods and Long Turnaround Times to meet BFAS’s Goal of Standardizing Information for a Large Number of Animal Welfare Organizations, AntStack Implemented AWS OpenSearch and AWS Dynamo DB.
  • OpenSearch Creates Index Points for all Fields in the Data, Providing a Mapping Between Data and Location, Resulting in Rapid Access and a significant reduction in Operation Time per Request.

Results that speak volumes

AntStack’s Solution Streamlines User Management and Reporting, minimizing manual intervention.

By Incorporating Advanced Reporting and Data Sharing Capabilities, BFAS’s Efforts to consolidate Information for Animal Welfare are significantly enhanced.

Faster GTM
Team Size
Cost Savings
How Best Friends Animal Society Developed a Shared-Data Repository & Collaboration Platform client pic

In their words

Michael Kabella

Sr. Director, Enterprise Data & Analytics

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