Proof Positivity: Enough Said

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Why is the title Enough said?  Because I am proving to you why you should think positivly.  Does feeling miserable make you feel better about yourself?  I wouldn’t think so.  It raises blood pressure which in turn adds stress and stress gives you headaches, sometimes migraines.  Migraines can lead to stroke and the cycle goes on and on.  When you think on the positive side you are more relaxed and less stressed.  My friend Benny from Ya-ttitudeTM     states,   ” A negative mind has not the ability to create positive or good thoughts.”   If you give negative, you get negative.  If you give positive imagine how much you could accomplish.  Community serviceis something that ties into this.  Community service is something you do for another individual of group of individuals and when you are finished with your project you get that warm fuzzy feeling and you are happy and there are so many benefits it’s crazy.

 

Benny and I are not the only ones in this world who feel that the power of positivity will take you far.  Valorie Burton, professional life coach and the author of   How Did I Get So Busy? and What’s Really Holding You Back?,  says  “People aim for success, believing it will bring happiness, but studies show it works the other way around — happiness brings greater success,” says Burton, who has coached clients in 40 states and seven countries. “Sprinkle uplifting moments throughout your day.” Positive emotions help you manage stress.

 

Some of the tips she offers are:

Commit to small changes that reconnect you with the people and things that matter most:

1. Create “fun goals” — things you’ll do for fun at least once a week

2. Stop hoarding vacation time. Take out the calendar and schedule time off in 2009

3. Take a daily walk with a loved one

4. Sit down as a family for dinner (only 28% of Americans do)

5. Tame your technology habits by having “no email periods” throughout the day

6. Before going to bed, write down three things you are grateful for (You’ll sleep better)

7. Say “no” more, so you can say “yes” to the things that matter

8. Get in “flow” with challenging, enjoyable activities

9. Stop eating lunch at your desk (75% of Americans do), and eat with a friend

    10. Every day, do something kind for someone.

    Keep resolutions specific and measurable.  Burton advises:

    -- Set goals that are authentic and meaningful.
    -- Be flexible and make adjustments as you go.
    -- Mark dates to check in on your goals.
    -- Partner with someone who will hold you accountable.
So, there you have it.  Positivity is where it is at.  It's not uncool to be positive and in the long
run it will help you feel good about yourself.

Doobie, Doobie, Doo

Legendary American rock band, The Doobie Brothers, will perform inside Cobo Arena at the 2009 North American International Auto Show’s (NAIAS) annual black-tie Charity Preview gala on Jan. 16.  The band will entertain Charity Preview attendees at 9 p.m. in Cobo Arena with doors opening at 8:30 p.m.

 

“The Doobie Brothers performing at Charity Preview will make this truly a night to remember for our guests,” said Joe Serra, senior co-chair of the 2009 NAIAS.  “Adding a band like this with their history and caliber to the evening’s festivities is a perfect fit for a fun night for Detroiters while supporting 12 local children’s charities.”

Those attending must present their Charity Preview ticket stub at the entrance to Cobo Arena to see the Doobie Brothers performance.  Seating and standing room will be available at the performance along with food and refreshments.

Since it began in 1976, Charity Preview has raised over $77 million for children’s charities in metro Detroit.  Medical treatment, clothing and support services for local kids in need all are made possible through the purchase of Charity Preview tickets.

Tickets for the event are $400 each and can be purchased by calling 888.838.7500. 

 NAIAS 2009 Official Dates

 – January 11 – 25 at Cobo Center in Detroit
 – Press Preview will be held Sunday, Jan. 11 through Tuesday, Jan. 13
 – Industry Preview will be held Wednesday, Jan. 14 and Thursday, Jan. 15
 – The annual black-tie Charity Preview gala will be held Friday evening,
   Jan. 16
 – Public Days will be held Saturday, Jan. 17 through Sunday, Jan. 25

Charity organizations that will benefit:

 Barat Child and Family Services; Boys & Girls Club of Southeastern Michigan; Boys Hope Girls Hope of Detroit; The Children’s Center; Judson Center; Children’s Services of Northeastern Guidance Center Assistance League; The Detroit Institute for Children; Think Detroit PAL; Easter Seals – Michigan; March of Dimes; Children’s Hospital of Michigan; and the DADA Charitable Foundation Fund, a fund of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan.

 

Homegrown Snack Cracker Box Had A Little More Than Snacks

Annie’s fan Debra Rogoff of Irvine, Calif. recently got more than delicious bunnies in her $3.39 box of Annie’s Homegrown Sour Cream & Onion Cheddar Bunnies: her daughter also found a white envelope stuffed with $10,000.

After the Rogoff family called the police about their  find, they discovered that another customer purchased the same box of crackers from a  Whole Foods Market and placed the envelope inside, thinking her money would be safer there than in a bank. The woman mistakenly returned the box of crackers with the money, and the store  accidently restocked the box rather than getting rid of it.

In recognition of the Rogoff family’s good deed, Annie’s today announced a $10,000 gift to a food bank of the Rogoffs’ choice, which is Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County.

“This act of kindness by the Rogoff famiily exemplifies the values that Annie’s Homegrown stands for,” said John Foraker, chief executive officer for Annie’s, Inc. “In fact, Annie’s Homegrown’s motto is ‘Eat Responsibly. Act Responsibly.’ This donation on the Rogoffs’ behalf is an expression of our appreciation for these good-hearted and loyal Annie’s customers.”

“We are very surprised by all of the attention this has received world wide, as we are sure others would do the same thing,” said Debra Rogoff. “We believe what has resonated with people is that, deep down, we all know how we should be treating each other, even in turbulent times. It’s wonderful that Annie’s is making this generous gift to a food bank on our behalf. We are long-time Annie’s fans and have enjoyed their products for many years.”

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Proof Positivity: Running Late

me20I’m running late this morning I just wanted to stay in bed.  Here at Proof Positivity I was on vacation and it threw me off. 

 

Walk For Your Kidneys

In EL SEGUNDO, California  an effort to raise money for The Kidney TRUST, a nonprofit organization aimed at prevention and awareness of chronic kidney disease (CKD),DaVita Inc., announced  the 3rd annual “Kidney Awareness Time” Walk-a-thon (The KAT Walk) reached more than 250,000 people, and raised more than $100,000 for CKD education programs.

This year’s DaVita KAT Walks Across America, a series of 5k walks designed to raise awareness and funds to fight chronic kidney disease, took place in 20 cities across the U.S. and offered free kidney disease evaluations and screenings courtesy of The Kidney TRUST.  Each 5k walk represents about 16,900 steps, totaling 337,900 steps traveled — roughly equivalent to the number of Americans receiving dialysis treatment for kidney failure today.

“The spirit of the walkers was amazing — gathering in all parts of the country to walk together and make a personal contribution to the fight against kidney disease. These dedicated individuals spent countless hours preparing for the walks, while raising money for the fight against kidney disease,” said Barbara L. Lawson, President of The Kidney TRUST. “All of us at The Kidney TRUST are so pleased and proud to be the beneficiary of their efforts, which will support the expansion of The Kidney TRUST’s CKD rapid-screening program currently rolling out around the U.S.”

Of the 26 million Americans with CKD, only 10 percent are aware they have the disease. Most people do not know they have CKD because early stages of the illness rarely manifest symptoms. This lack of awareness is a major reason for undertaking the DaVita KAT Walks and provides participants with the motivation and desire to educate and inform the general public. The walkers want people to know the importance of getting tested early, rather than waiting until the disease hits a late stage, requiring dialysis care or a kidney transplant.

“Our 32,000 teammates are dedicated to helping patients with chronic kidney disease not only in our dialysis centers, but within their communities as well. Thousands of our DaVita teammates raised over $100,000 for CKD awareness and education programs,” said Kent Thiry, DaVita Chairman and CEO. “We are encouraged by the success of the 2008 KAT Walks and are committed to doing even more in 2009.”

Early testing and detection gives those with CKD an opportunity to delay the disease or possibly avoid the onset of life-threatening kidney failure, which requires dialysis or a kidney transplant because there is no cure for CKD. In addition, those at high risk for CKD can help protect their kidneys by controlling high blood pressure, maintaining their blood sugar, drinking lots of water and consuming a healthy diet.

A  Jump in Labrador Retriever Adoptions Expected

A  feature film for animal lovers, 20th Century Fox’s Marley & Me, hit theaters on Christmas Day. Recent history shows the popularity of “Marley” will lead to an increase in Labrador retrievers being acquired.  Unfortunately, many of them might soon be surrendered to shelters and breed-rescue groups nationwide as families find out this particular breed just wasn’t the right fit for their lifestyle. Similar upticks in animal acquisitions happened after films such as Beethoven, 101 Dalmatians and even the more recent Beverly Hills Chihuahua.

The American Humane Association and 20th Century Fox have launched a public-awareness campaign about the increased relinquishment of specific breeds of animals after they have been featured in blockbuster movies. Too many dogs are given up after reality sets in about how much responsibility or care they require, or that their needs are diametrically different than the person or families who acquired them.

American Humane and 20th Century Fox want people to know that when it comes to getting a pet, they should consider adopting from the millions of animals that end up in shelters each year.

“American Humane is working collaboratively with 20th Century Fox on vital animal issues and we’re particularly excited about our combined efforts to raise national awareness about the importance of adopting animals from shelters and breed-rescue groups,” said Marie Belew Wheatley, president and CEO of American Humane.

The main dog that plays “Marley” in the film is, himself, a dog from a rescue – proving that great dogs can be found at our nation’s shelters. In the movie, “Marley” chews, shreds and wreaks havoc, but his unconditional love inspires.

This isn’t so far fetched.  In my own life time I’ve had many puppies and the excuse “The dog ate my homework”  Is very possible. 

“In the case of the dog in Marley & Me, what you see is what you might get,” said Wheatley. “It’s important for potential pet owners to keep this in mind when deciding whether to adopt a dog.”

When adopting an animal, American Humane suggests people research specific dog breeds to ensure the new pet will fit their lifestyle. Before adopting a Labrador, American Humane encourages people to determine whether a Lab is right for them.

 Just the Lab Facts:
 —  Labs are the most popular breed in the U.S.
 —  They can develop slowly and continue puppy-like behavior even past age
     two.
 —  Labs can be wonderful companion dogs for active families.
 —  Many animal shelters and rescues have a large variety of Lab mixes
     available for adoption.
 —  Black Labs and Lab mixes tend to be adopted less often than other
     dogs.
 —  Labs are multi-talented and can excel in animal-assisted therapy,
     swimming, retrieving and much more.

 

Please be informed when you adopt a pet.   It’s not fair to the animal to have a nice home and then have the home taken away.

Proof Positivity: Time To Prepare For The New Year

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With the new year resolutions are made.  I’ve come to the resolution not to make resolutions.  That has been the only one I am able to keep.  When I am making the decision to lose weight I am going to do that when I feel ready to do so otherwise I feel like I’m setting myself up for failure.   

If you  want to get a little more bang for your buck then you have to learn to manage your money.  If you’re in debt I suggest Consumer Credit Conseling.   I would not consider what my family is in in debt.  Most of our bills are in medical expenses and we just finished paying off a lot of back debt.  You can get out of debt without a counselor.  Here is how we did it.  First, we had to figure out what we owe.  We did this from getting a credit check that covers all three of the major credit companies TransUnion, Eqifax, and Experian.  There will be phone numbers of different  agencies call them and begin negotiating.  Don’t just accept your $1,000 bill.  You are in debt and can’t pay your bills to begin with.  These people have been looking at your debt for so long that they truly don’t expect you to pay any of it.  Get them to knock the debt down to half that cost or more.  I’ve done 50% but I’ve heard stories of people who only had 10% of the bill to pay.  Once you are done with negotiations be sure to get the agreement in writing.  In some areas laws are geared toward the bill collector and not the consumer.  The written agreement will help keep you from getting into further financial trouble.  They like to pull some sneaky things on people to make you pay the full bill even after the agreement is made.   Verbal word is hearsay and you can’t prove that that was the agreement made.  Written word can prove your case.

 

Credit cards need to be thrown out.  You don’t need to keep racking up the bill and they overcharge anyway.  Saving money for a big purchase is what you are supposed to do.  You need to think to yourself ” Is this a want or a need?”  What you need are food, clothing, shelter, and water.  Anything beyond that is a want.  Applying for more credit cards is bad.  If you can’t get a card and you keep applying and applying this affects your score.  Saving up is the best way to go.

 

Friendship Has A Lot To Do With Charity

 

In Nora, Sweden An international book project brought about by Norwegian charity, Echo 2012 aiming at portraying children’s views on friendship has been launched under the auspices of Swedish publishing group, Bombadil Publishing.

   Children from 27 countries are joining together in an unusual project to write and illustrate to the topic of  “What does a friend do?”  The book will be translated into 12 languages and takes an active look into the idea of friendship, promotes the idea of camaraderie and communication between people of all ages. There are 27 participating countries in this event.

 

   The proceeds from the book sales will be spent helping participating charity partners in their work in promoting global friendship through understanding and communication as well as on combating illiteracy.
Part of the revenue will also be distributed as royalties among the contributing youth authors and artists in accordance with Bombadil Publishing’s policy.

 

   The book is estimated to sell in excess of three million copies and its preliminary release date of September 2009 will be preceded and succeeded by charity festivals, exhibitions and various friendship and knowledge enhancing
activities for young people.

   Bombadil Publishing is a  youth-to-youth publisher with headquarters in Sweden and has been revolutionising children’s approach to reading since its foundation just over a year ago by allowing them to take a
leading part in the literary and commercial process of book creation. Bombadil Publishing publishes books written by young people for young people, with the aim of allowing them to share their stories, visions and dreams.  Bombadil Publishing is proud to be associated with Echo 2012’s efforts to spread global friendship and understanding through communication, and sees its participation in this project as a manifestation of the endeavour to promote, encourage and endorse young people’s interest in books and their strive for democracy through freedom of thought.

Proof Positivity: Going On Vacation

me18 I will not be writing for Proof Positivity for the rest of the week.  I need to do a lot of family things such as make Christmas cookies, wrap Christmas presents and hide them, listen to Christmas music…  Speaking of  Christmas music here is my list of Christmas music that makes a difference:

Do They Know It’s Christmas Time For Band Aide  230px-liveaidlogoLive Aide  On July 13, 1985 a multi-venue rock music concert was held to raise funds for famine relief in Ethiopia.

Happy Christmas (War is Over)  This song was recorded by John Lennon in 1971 and was his reaction to Vietnam. 

We Are The World USA for Africa180px-usa_for_africa_logo_svg  Profits  went to the USA for Africa Foundation, which used them for the relief of famine and disease in Africa and specifically to 1984–1985 famine in Ethiopia.

USA for Africa also promoted Hands across America.  To be a part of the human chain you had to donate $10 to be a part of it approximately 7 million people held hands. The   money raised was used to fight hunger and homelessness in America.

Earth Song Is Micheal Jackson’s song geared toward treating our Earth better.  It’s not exactly a Christmas song but it is in the spirit of giving back to our planet what we have taken away from it.

 

Volunteering at a Soup Kitchen

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On December 12, ScienceFirst staff members served food to more than 250 New Jersey residents in need.  The group spent over 3 hours at the soup kitchen, and all appreciated working for a company that let them take time out of their workday to help others. Besides serving the food, the group assisted with preparing the food, creating healthy portions, and communicating with those in need.

A soup kitchen is just one of many ways in which to make a difference.  I think I have finally thought of a way to incorporate community service for my own children.  Since I am making cookies anyway I think I’m going to take a box to Ronald McDonald House on Thursday.  I remember what it was like not being home after the birth of my son and all the people who donated food really helped out because we didn’t plan on being there.  So, cookies will be my gift that my children and I will share.

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday.

Proof Positivity: Toys That Are Safe

me17  Toys that are safe are important to us parents.  Recently, I threw out a bunch of Barbies made in  China.  More and more it seems child safety isn’t as important to large toy manufacturers as it once was.  These toy manufacturers that were once American and had safety regulations placed on them, now are in places where the regulations aren’t up to the high standards that we were used to.  Toys with lead paint in them has become an issue, one that I myself am not willing to risk.  I now look on the boxes to see where my child’s toy is made.  I hold nothing against any country but I love my children and the past speaks for itself. 

Timethief from One Cool Site: WordPress Blogging Tips and This Time This Space  pointed me to a discussion on BC.  “HealthyToys.org  is an ever-growing database maintained by the non-profit Ecology Center, which, along with other research groups, uses X-ray technology to detect lead, PVC (polyvinyl chloride, aka the poison plastic), and a few other heavy metals and chemicals, in both plastic and wood toys. Healthy Toys just released its latest tests on 1,500 toys and found that lead was present in 20 percent of them, with kid’s jewelry having the highest levels, and PVC was used in 27 percent. On the positive side, the Center noticed a 50-percent reduction in toys with elevated lead levels in this year’s tests over last year’s.”

Timethief listed a few other sites for safe toys:  Rosie Hippo, Oompa, Moolka.com, The Green Guide, and GenGreen life.

Here are a few of my own suggestions: If you are the crafty sort and your clothes are too out of shape to send off to a second hand store why not save them and make a toy out of them.  Go to an appliance store and ask them for large cardboard boxes.  Bring them home staple, them tape them, whatever it takesThen have your children decorate it with markers, crayons, tempra paint, fabric, and even rope to make a playhouse. You can make puppets and kids don’t mind that you made these things.  Most children only care about brand name toys because of the commercials on tv.   My own kids will play with an empty pop bottle and be perfectly happy.

 

You can also sign a petition to ban toxic phthalates “Earlier this year, Congress passed a tough new law that would make it illegal to sell lead and chemically tainted children’s products. But now, some companies are saying they can’t meet the deadline – and they want to keep selling some of their toxic children’s toys after they’re supposed to stop!”

 Please be informed if you are to sign this petition here is a sight that is against the petition.

Helping Children out a Big Lots

Big Lots, the nation’s largest broadline closeout retailer, will spread holiday cheer as it helps the U.S. Marines and Santa deliver toys to needy children across the country.

“Providing toys to children in need is one of the true joys of the season,” said CEO Steve Fishman. “Our partnership with Toys for Tots enables us to bring hope and happiness to families across America.”

Big Lots has been a loyal corporate sponsor of the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Campaign since 1994, holding  toy collection drives at local stores. The company also provides special discounted pricing on new toys to the Toys for Tots Foundation through its Granted Wishes Program.

The Big Lots Toys for Tots drive, along with other donations, helped the Foundation distribute over 20 million new toys to needy youngsters last year.

“Over the years, Big Lots has helped us ensure that millions of deserving children could experience the thrill of unwrapping a special gift during the holidays,” said Lieutenant General H. P. Osman, USMC (Ret.), Marine Toys for Tots Foundation President & CEO. “Their contributions and leadership over the past 14 years have made a positive difference in lives of many families.”

This year,  the Foundation has experienced a dramatic increase in toy requests. “More people will be turning to Toys for Tots to help them deliver the magic of the season,” said Rob Claxton, Big Lots Senior VP of Marketing. “We want to make it as easy as possible for the American public to join us in making sure that every child has a present from Santa under the tree.”

Through December 24, Big Lots customers and associates can drop their gift of a new toy into the familiar Toys for Tots donation barrels at many of the 1,300+ Big Lots locations nationwide. Even though Big Lots has a non-solicitation policy at all of its stores, the company is proud to continue its tradition of community service through strategic alliances with national non-profit organizations such as Toys for Tots and The Salvation Army.

Proof Positivity: Walsh Case Closed

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Finally, the Walsh case has closed.  Since the tragity of  the murder of John Walsh’s  son  a lot of good has come from it.  John Walsh started America’s Most Wanted because of it  by 1995 350 profiled criminals have been captured and stronger child laws are in place.  John Walsh and his family are strong advocates for children and he is a good example of turning a horribly bad thing into a positive thing.  The Walsh family advocated for Missing Children Act of 1982  and the Missing Children’s Assistance Act of 1984.    The Walsh family also founded Adam Walsh Child Resource Center, a non-profit organization dedicated to legislative reform.  Previous to the Amber Alert we had Code Adam.  On July 27, 2006 the  Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act  was signed into legislation.

 

Honoring America’s Heroes

 

This week, the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes, a not-for-profit dedicated to helping severely wounded veterans of the War on Terror, brought more than 150 severely wounded veterans, their families and  caregivers to the 5th Annual Road to Recovery Conference & Tribute, Sunday Dec. 7 through Thursday, Dec. 11 at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, FL.

 

The all-expense-paid event featured medical and career counseling, an adaptive sports clinic, motivational speakers, musical entertainment, and an opportunity to share inspirational success stories and form a lasting network of support.

“Tens of thousands of American troops have returned home from Iraq and Afghanistan severely wounded, struggling to heal from physical and mental wounds, pay for medical and other bills, and re-enter civilian life,” said Dan Vargas, director of the CSAH Family Support Network.

Highlights of the Road to Recovery Conference included:

Adaptive Sports Clinic –  included adaptive skiing, snowboarding, rock climbing, and mountain biking, was adapted for use by amputees, the blind, and those with traumatic brain injury, not only served as a form of physical, but also psychological therapy.

Career Fair – Helping attendees transition from a military to a civilian lifestyle, the conference featured a job fair, resume writing and interviewing skills classes, and an employment panel, which led to successful job placements for veterans.

Entertainment – Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band, the Vandel-Snook Band, and artist Dan Dunn wowed the crowd, while up-and-coming country music star, wounded veteran and conference attendee Stephen Cochran surprised his fellow veterans and their families with a performance at the closing ceremony. Veterans were also given tickets to Walt Disney World, where they were able to share much needed quality time with their families.

Counseling Sessions – CSAH and a team of counselors from the Department of Veterans Affairs provided counseling sessions for the veterans, their spouses, caregivers and children to enable interactive conversation and facilitate the creation of a lasting support network to aid in the recovery process.

“There’s nothing the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes won’t do for a disabled vet,” said Ssgt. Matthew Keil, a disabled Army veteran who attended the conference with his wife Tracy. “This is the only place where we have been able to meet others who understand what we’re going through and find the right kind of support that we need. I’m with 150 families here that understand me and get it.”

Proof Positivity: Santa Around The Corner

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My kids went to see Santa yesterday.  This Santa is a really good Santa with the proper Santa laugh.  Anyhow that is why there was no post yesterday.  My kids come first and they did have a good time.  They saw a group of children who were nervous sing, ate Taco Bell and Dairy Queen, saw Santa and the baby got to walk around the mall for the first time.  I put him on a leash for the freedom it would give him and so I don’t loose him.

 

If you want to know where Santa is at on Christmas eve Norad keeps track of that.  Do you think inflation affects Santa?  I don’t know Santa does have to shop for every child in the world maybe Bill Gates is an elf in disguise.  

 

What do you think of adopting a wild pet? Chipangali Wildlife Orpanage gives an opportunity for adoption.  Maybe not so much as an adoption, you would expect to keep a pet you adopted, more like a sponsorship.  You can’t keep a lion in your back yard your neighbors might not be happy with you. 

Function of Chipangali:

1. Wildlife Orphanage/ Animal Rehabilitation Centre: To provide a service  to rescue and care for injured wildlife, thereby providing a home for the many injured, sick, orphaned, abused, confiscated or abandoned wild animals from anywhere in Zimbabwe.

2. Education: to educate the Zimbabwe public, especially young children, with the aid of live viewing of many species not easily seen in the wild. Provide relevant lectures, film and slide shows for visiting groups. Thus providing a local resource centre for children to appreciate the important value of Zimbabwe’s natural heritage.

3. Nature Conservation: to teach people and especially children, to appreciate the wonder and variety of indigenous wildlife and not to take it for granted that these animals or their environment will not always be there for their enjoyment without the correct management of our natural resources.

4. Research: to observe and record useful zoological information on captive animals such as body growth and development, nutrition, dentition and gestation periods. Relevant research and field surveys are undertaken in the wild, under natural conditions in National Parks and protected areas.

5. Cooperation: To provide a link between local and governmental authorities thus being able to offer assistance to organizations like SPCA, National Parks, schools and private individuals where ever problem animals are concerned.

 

Very Little To Eat

  As people in the UK receive Christmas cards, today many working animals in West Africa, the only card
they’ll ever receive is cardboard scraps to eat.

 One of the world’s oldest veterinary charities (SPANA – Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad) explained that many working horses and donkeys in the West African country of Mauritania never get to eat straw or grass as
it simply costs too much for their impoverished owners. Instead, they have to make do with a nosebag full of chopped cardboard.

 

   Jeremy Hulme, SPANA’s chief executive said: “Cardboard contains large amounts of cellulose, so working animals can eat and digest it as a useful fibre source but given the hard lives they lead it gives them little in the way of energy. If they are lucky they might get their cardboard scraps mixed with a few grains of sorghum or cattle feed.

 

   “When SPANA began work in Mauritania, the average life expectancy of a donkey was just a few months. But our vets have dramatically reduced mortality rates through the provision of regular veterinary care, delivered via a mobile clinic for non-urgent cases, or a longer stay in SPANA’s refuge for more serious injuries or illnesses.

 

   “There are still problems – hungry working animals will still scavenge amongst the rubbish and eat plastic bags, bits of rope, bottle tops and even glass. Through our education programme we are making owners more aware of the
problems, and that is having a direct positive impact on the welfare of their animals.”

 

   SPANA was founded in 1923 by two intrepid British women, Kate and Nina Hosali. Then, as now, it focuses on providing veterinary care to working animals in the knowledge that they play a vital role in supporting poor
families and communities. Working animals still provide livelihoods for millions of people and communities around the world, but if they fall sick or ill, it can mean the difference between a family having food on the table or
going to be hungry.

SPANA now runs 19 veterinary centres and 21 mobile veterinary clinics in countries like Mauritania, Mali, Morocco, Ethiopia, Jordan and Syria.

 

 More and more SPANA has been asked to intervene in emergency situations and has  operated veterinary missions in Chad and Darfur, Kosovo, Iraq, Zimbabwe, and East Africa during the severe drought in 2006. It is currently
working with the UNHCR on an innovative livestock and livelihood project in Chad looking at livestock and working animals belonging to refugees from Darfur.

 

Usually when I think of hunger and poverty I only think of  humans.    Maybe it’s ignorance on my part but the health of the animals is important.  If the animals are sick that may be a food source gone for some families.  They probably need donkeys to garden and if they can’t garden then there is no food.

 

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