If it were up to me, I'd have a huge parcel of land, and a family of rescued animals. Sadly it's not up to me, and I have limited resources. The dog and two cats that live with me are rescues, but bringing any more into my home would be irresponsible due to space, time, and finances.
That doesn't mean my adopting days are over though, and I sponsor several animals that live on sanctuaries. Adopting these animals allows me to contribute to their care, but it also puts a face on animal rescue efforts. While nice for me, it isn't a requirement, but it really helps me to talk to other people about ways to help. In addition to helping these particular animals, I can use my experiences to do some outreach.
I have framed pictures of my adopted animals from Poplar Spring Sanctuary . They sit on a shelf in my home and anyone who comes to visit sees them right away. I can refer to the animals by their names and talk about their personal histories. For one pig, I can tell the story of how I actually witnessed her rescue on my way to work one night and then saw her at the open house a few months later.
In addition to sharing my experiences, I can give people their own. It's not secret that I'm terrible at buying gifts for people. I never know what they want. Besides that, most people I know (myself included) have too much junk cluttering up their homes. That's why adoptions are an excellent gift item. Rather than wasting money on a potentially awful gift, you're making a difference and educating someone in the process. If you can take them to visit their animal, it's an added bonus.
Here are the sanctuaries from which I've adopted animals, but look into what's local to you too.
Poplar Spring Sanctuary