By Nomi Berger
Have you thought of adding some new and different resolutions to your traditional New Year’s list?
Have you ever thought of getting involved in the world of rescue, but didn’t quite know how?
Here then, are twelve different ways – one for each month of the year – for you to resolve to make a difference in the lives of rescue animals this year. Even if you choose only one, that choice will make all the difference in the world.
1. Contact your local humane society or animal shelter and volunteer your services to them: from office work, to cleaning cages and kennels, to being a dog walker or a cat companion once a week.
2. Donate a basket of dog items such as food, treats, bowls, toys and pee pads, together with either new or gently used collars and leashes, clothes and blankets, or a basket of cat items such as food and treats, toys, games and litter to that same humane society or shelter.
3. Contact a local rescue organization and ask to volunteer for them. Volunteers form the backbone of every non-profit group, and no group can function without them. Areas always in need of extra hands include web site assistance, updating email lists, attending adoption events, planning and attending fundraisers, distributing flyers, pamphlets and brochures, and transporting animals to and from vet appointments.
4. Select one particular rescue online that “speaks to you” and make a monetary contribution to them – either as a onetime payment or as recurring monthly payments.
5. Read about the other ways you can donate to them – from wish lists to links to various online stores’ web sites – and purchase items both for yourself and them that way.
6. Follow that particular rescue’s Face Book page, and both “like” them and “share” their postings on social media on an ongoing basis.
7. Instead of accepting birthday gifts this year, ask your friends and family to make contributions to that rescue in your name.
8. Host a small fundraiser (bake sales, garage sales and yard sales are among the most popular) and donate the proceeds to that rescue. You will receive not only their gratitude, but a tax receipt as well.
9. At your place of work, keep a container on your desk with the name of that rescue on it, and encourage your co-workers to deposit their spare change in it. Once the container is full, bring the change to the bank (already rolled, please), mail a check to the rescue, and begin again.
10. Sign petitions, both online and in person: one calling for legislation to ban puppy mills, and one calling on pet stores to stop selling dogs and cats.
11. Foster a dog or cat from a shelter or rescue. Learn precisely what’s required of you, then welcome one very needy and deserving animal into your home temporarily, until he or she can be placed in a permanent home.
12. Adopt a rescue dog or cat and save two lives – the life of the one you are adopting, and the life of the one who will immediately take his or her place.
As for next year? Either continue working your way down this list, or resolve to draw up one of you own.