From September 2010

Rescued animals: Expiry date

48 hours, that’s the life expectancy of a rescued kitty in the hands of your average turkish animal lover.

If after 48 hours a solution is not found, the only alternative for a great number of animal lovers in this country is to dump their rescues in a park in the middle of night.

You see all those Facebook posts by animal lovers in need of finding an urgent home for their rescues. Now, think about it… where do those animals end up?

I know where… they end up in parks, in forests, in factories… they end up dead.

Here he is, his name is Magnus… he is blind and he is looking for a home.

The difference between this case and the other ones you see is that Magnus doesn’t come with a expiry date.

Do you have what it takes to be Magnus’s family? Write to me…

viktor@myletsadopt.com

Reflections on animal activism

This morning Claire Berlinski sent me a most insightful article by Malcom Gladwell.

Twitter, Facebook and social Activism

Gladwell has a knack for understanding how society fonctions, what makes us tick and take action, what defines our taste as society and, to me, most important, he has a deeply ingrained sense of social justice.

In recent weeks I have been reflecting upon a number of issues at the very heart of the Let’s Adopt! Community, I instinctively knew some of the answers but Gladwell sheds some light on the issue.

Here are some of the main points in Gladwell’s article:

- Fifty years after one of the most extraordinary episodes of social upheaval in American history (The Civil Rights Movement), we seem to have forgotten what activism is.

High-risk activism, is a “strong-tie” phenomenon.

The kind of activism associated with social media isn’t like this at all. The platforms of social media are built around weak ties…. but weak ties seldom lead to high-risk activism.

-   Facebook activism succeeds not by motivating people to make a real sacrifice but by motivating them to do the things that people do when they are not motivated enough to make a real sacrifice.

-   Facebook and the like are tools for building networks, which are the opposite, in structure and character, of hierarchies. Unlike hierarchies, with their rules and procedures, networks aren’t controlled by a single central authority….The drawbacks of networks scarcely matter if the network isn’t interested in systemic change or if it doesn’t need to think strategically. But if you’re taking on a powerful and organized establishment you need to have a hierarchy.

So, where does all of this leave animal activists? In essence it means that

1. Facebook is the ideal instrument to make noise, the kind of noise that will never really make a difference. A sad example of this is to witness the thousands of animal activists spreading animal cruelty videos online. Will they ever achieve anything? Not really. The animal is dead already, the majority will look away and the ones that look are already aware of animal cruelty anyway. To this you must add the risk of copycats popping out of everywhere.

By making easy the sharing of those videos under the pretext of “increasing awareness” Facebook is fulfilling the social activism “fix” of tens of thousands of people.

Same for petitions, a complete waste of time and energy that could instead be channelled into actions and organizations that really work.

2. Facebook is, a great way to raise attention or save ONE particular animal, and this is why we don’t have any problems finding solutions for even the most difficult of cases,  but its falls short when it comes to handling large scale operations (like Let’s Adopt!) or rallying a community large enough to, let’s say, turn the U.S. into a No-Kill Nation.

3. In our last post we made a plea for developing stronger ties with our FB contacts, to get to know our lists. Most of the miracles you see us performing here on a daily basis take place because a group of us in Turkey and around the world built real ties, real friendships that extended past virtuality. In other words, we built real teams.

4. Within this year we will find a way to stop using Facebook as a virtual base.

5. If Let’s Adopt! is to survive and achieve its goals we are going to have to find a way for our members to TAKE responsibility, and by this I mean not only pointing us out to animals in distress , or leaving comments under our pictures and posts (don’t get me wrong, we really love that!). By responsibility I mean to actively seek solutions on behalf of the group and our animals, act as foster homes, final homes, flight volunteers, fund raise, put their skills at the disposal of the group and work within the framework of teams.

We need YOU to remember that there is no change without sacrifice, that activism is a sacred activity not a clicking game, that we deal with matters of life and death and that if animals mean anything to them it’s time to step forward and do something about it.

If we cannot find a way to get you all to move with us we will direct all our members to the best animal organizations we can find and Let’s Adopt! will close by the end of the year.

Viktor

More reflections on Let’s Adopt! and Sacred Activism to be found in this article by Diana Jaramillo.

Something for the Crossposters

Every crossposter should read this… before Crossposting it.. :-)

Facebook and social media are amazing tools for spreading ideas, that is clear, but, are we using the tools right?

I say we don’t.

Sharing is what Facebook is based on, not so long ago we were all trying to keep our ideas, tastes and preferences to ourselves, social media and the massive success of Facebook changed everythingl

The average Facebook member has about 150 “connections” on his list, so, in theory, whenever you share something in your Wall, whatever it is you are sharing should have the potential to reach an amazing number of people, but does it?

No. Not really… Most of the times you are sharing to yourself. I know it’s hard to accept this but it is a fact.

How to make the FB thingy work for us?

1. Most of us still keep our connections to a minimum. Wrong move. Nobody interesting in spreading a cause and making change should harbor such concerns any longer. Our contact lists should be an ever growing one but…

2. “Know your friends”. How well can you “know” someone in Facebook?. Clearly, not so well, however, Facebook allows you, in a glimpse, to have a complete of what a person is all about. Make an effort in getting to know those on your list, or at least stablish a meaningful rapport. You never know when it may prove useful.

3. Share, share, share!!!!… The action of sharing will not only help you spread whatever it is you want to spread, it will also attract likeminded people with whom you share interests.

4. Start a blog. Helping other’s ideas is very nice, and we thank you for it, but you surely have something to say. I’m convinced you have something unique to offer to the world, something you want to change, a need to express something else other than our ideas. A blog is the perfect tool to do this. I cannot tell you how interested I am to learn more about you, a blog is the perfect way to reach our to the world and share your  knowledge and interests.

5. Be focussed but not boring. Life is not, cannot, must not be only about animals. We all have, or should have, several interests. Explore them… Learn…. Grow.

Share more with the world.

Start a Blog, a movement of your own…

Viktor

TASSO AWARD: Expected

This morning we received the following letter from TASSO, in Germany. As it is official and it will be of interest to all members of our community I will reproduce it in its entirety.

Dear Ivan,

Today we received the voting results (points) from our jury members. You have an impressive first rank in the online voting. After having calculated all points we are sorry that we have to inform you that your project will not be within rank one to three.
The three finalists will be announced on our awards ceremony on October 3rd .
Thank you again for your dedication for your project. We would be happy to stay in contact with you and to hear from you how your project is going on.
Best regards

Heike Engelhart

I know this will come as a massive dissapointment for many of you, but it must not be so. It seems that the personal bias of a jury got in the way of things…

Dont’ be dissapointed. You supported our community when it was needed. Your honest votes showed everybody that  that there are thousands of us directly involved in making things happen and pushing for change.
Let’s Adopt is not radical, it is radically different.
Society doesn’t reward radical innovation, it tries to quash it.
This is the reason why, with a very few exceptions of Awards offered to scientic innovation, radical progress is seldom rewarded, and, like Nathan Winograd, leader of the No-Kill Movement in the USA can confirm, it is, in most cases, fought against.
Let’s Adopt! is already, the world’s largest animal rescue network. We currently operate in 12 countries and before we will start operating in three more, Mexico, Israel and Saudi Arabia.
We are a movement that, lead by a single minded community is saving lives, around the world, around the clock.
Very few, if any, can say this.
Organizations like ours don’t usually receive Awards, because we change things, because we move things forward, because we make our own game…

… and we are ok with that.

It’s up to us…  noone else my friends, noone else.

Viktor

When Mum says NO

Received an email from one of our members this morning. It was a desperate call for help.
Story goes like this… Our friend sees one of those turkish Facebook rescuers advertising a kitten on the street in mortal danger. The lady wouldn’t want to take it but she took a picture and expected someone else to do her duty.
So, our friend rushed to the location, got the kitty, took it home as they already have a friendly dog and they’ll be fostering him until a good home is found.
Nice rescue story right?
Well.. not really…
The kitty never made it home. Our friend’s mother just say NO.
So we now have a two month old kitty, at the most important moment in his life, the time when he must be socialized with other cats and become part of a pack, currently locked in a box in an istanbul vet.

All of this because a mum said NO.

Someone gives me ONE good reason why a family with a cat should close their doors to a kitty in this way.

Give me ONE good reason.

Maybe it’s financial? Can’t be… the family is reasonably well off and the cost of fostering a healthy kitty is negligible.

Maybe is religious? Can’t be either…  In Islam cats are favored animals.  Besides, the family is not particulary religious and they already have a dog.

I will never understand… That single negative answer will mark forever the life of this small baby…

I truly hope this will reach someone in Turkey who has a cat already and can get this baby out of the box. The family needs to have at least one other cat, why? because if they don’t it’s 90% certain the family will dump the cat after a week. It’s sad but this is the state of affairs here.

viktor@myletsadopt.com

Marlon Rolls ON!!!

Because life is nothing but a coaster ride…

If you only read one blog post today, if you only watch a video, let it be this one, the story is such a heartwarming one that you will find difficult not to share it..  :-)

Here is Marlon’s story

Pls Share this video and join us at Let’s Adopt Global

Marlon’s rescue and his world travels could only take place because of the Simba Fund.  The poor kitten would have stayed in Turkey hadn’t it been because of it.

Help other animals like Marlon make it to the new great lifes. Consider making a contribution today.

Viktor

The TASSO AWARD: Honesty pays

Sometimes, survival instincts tells us to follow a route, the shortest possible one, at no matter what price.

This is why so many of us look for short term solutions to problems, this is why dieticians are making fortunes on miracle diets, and the net is aflush with get-rich quick schemes.

This is why so many people and organizations try to cheat the system at the smallest possible occassion instead of taking the long route, the one that works… because is painful.

Yesterday’s events at the TASSO Award teach us a number of lessons but amongst them I would emphasize two

1. There are no real shorcuts.
2. Honesty pays.

This Award is not only about money. Our integrity is more valuable than a few thousand euros and it is certainly not for sale at any price.

For Let’s Adopt! the TASSO Award is about recognition and about building a relationship with one of the best animal organizations in Europe. This link will save many lives in the future.

And this is why we need your support today.

Please vote for Let’s Adopt!  HERE… the site is in German but our incredible designing team (lol) has produced the ultimate Voting guide: TASSO Voting for DUMMIES!… :-)

Give us a hand today, and after you do, pls ask your friends and family to support us in this contest.

Do it please… it matters.

Viktor

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Sparky, a wonderful pointer looking for a home

Sparky is a liver (chocolate) German Shorthaired Pointer a wonderfully clever and affectionate dogie whose main goal in life is to play with dogs, cats and just about anyone.
It takes you just a second to figure out her story. Her mother was bred by her owners, the male puppies were sold, Sparky, the female, dumped in a shelter left to fight for scraps of food.
Noone asked Sparky if she was ok with that plan…

Here is a video of Sparky

Sparky is a high-energy dog, she will require the kind of family that can take her on long walks to the forest, beach,  bike runs..

She is looking for the perfect home.

1.Sparky’s family MUST have another dog right now.
2. Sparky will live INSIDE the home, not abandoned in the garden. Believe it or not this rule is necessary in a country where most feel animals must not live within the same roof as human beings.
3. Sparky will be fed a RAW diet (www.rawfed.com).

Contact: viktor@myletsadopt.com

Hope needs an angel in Germany

A few months ago we rescued a dog from Izmir, we named him Hope.

We flew with him to Germany and left him in the hands of one of the best orthopedic surgeons in Europe.

We were given a 30% chance of success. This was a very difficult case, and we knew it.

Hope was operated twice… in the end the treatment didn’t work.

So let’s move on with option two.

We need to find an angel for Hope.Hope is already in Germany so it makes perfect sense to stay where he is.

We need to find a family in Germany willing to take our baby and accept him as he is… a beautiful and kind dog that cannot walk and will need to use a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

We are looking for an angel in Germany… Are you the one? Please help us find him.

Let’s put all the combined network of our community to find the most incredible home for Hope.

It’s time for him to live again..

Contact me: viktor@myletsadopt.com

P.S. We cannot do what we do without the help of our members.  Without the Simba Fund dogs like Hope and so many others would have no chance. If you are in a position to help please contribute to the Simba Fund.