It's a great idea that gives bloggers a chance to make a real difference in the lives of animals using the skills they have: writing, photography and video. And it's that idea, the idea of using the skills you have to make a difference, that I want to talk to you about today.
Sometimes I wonder if it's human nature to focus on the negative, the things that are wrong, the things that are bad, the things that overwhelm us and feel too difficult to repair. We see the SPCA commercials, the ones where Sarah McLachlan makes us feel downright suicidal and, wishing things were better but knowing we can't possibly bring another animal into our lives right now, we nod our heads and change the channel.
But that's where BtC4A comes in. How many of us have thought about the things we can do to improve the lives of shelter animals? Don't think you have anything to offer? Have you seen this?
|Copyright, The Pit Crew, Illinois Rescue|
The point is, we all have something we can do.
Don't have money to donate? Maybe the next time you're cleaning out your linen closet, you could take those old sheets and towels to a local shelter?
Do you have extra time? You can walk the dogs, play with the cats, clean the kennels. You can make phone calls.
Technically savvy and socially engaged? You can blog, you can tweet, you can share stories on Facebook, raise funds or simply awareness.
You can talk to (and recruit!) your co-workers and friends. Hang a rescue calendar on the wall of your office or cube then just wait and see how many conversations come from it.
Are you good with a camera? Maybe your local shelter or rescue could use someone to take pictures of the pups that would make them more appealing to someone looking for a new dog?
Do you have a car? Every week, dogs and cats are rescued from high-kill shelters and driven to safer havens. You don't have to have a big SUV to participate. Get on the mailing list and just sign up for the animals you can fit - someone else can take some of the others. The more people on the list of volunteers, the more flexibility the transport coordinator has to make the route work.
Sure, shelters and rescues need money and they need fosters and forever homes but they also need volunteers. They need people willing to man booths promoting the organization at local festivals, to handle the dogs at "meet the dogs" events, they need people to keep their websites up to date, to screen applicants, to visit prospective adopting families, to move dogs from a shelter to their new foster homes.
And of course, they need volunteers to walk, train and socialize the dogs, cats, bunnies and other critters that find themselves out of a home.
Landing in a shelter doesn't have to be the worst thing to happen to an animal. In fact, if that animal finds itself a new home with a family that truly wants them and promises to love and care for them for the rest of their lives, it could turn out to be the very best thing possible.
Just ask Bella.
To everyone who gives a little of their time, a little of their heart, a little of themselves to make the world a better place for animals, thank you.