As pictures unfolded the past several days of destruction from Hurricane Harvey along the Texas coast and the sky’s open spigot drenching Houston with floodwater devastation, one could not help but wonder about the people and animals impacted by this natural disaster.
Hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, floods -- every year the United States and other countries feel the assault of such forces. And, every year, rescue organizations, from the American Red Cross to the ASPCA, respond to people and pets in crisis. Sometimes the images and realities are overwhelming – who can forget Hurricane Katrina and New Orleans? These are the times when I, at least, wish I’d won the lottery and could pump millions of dollars into the organizations that respond to natural disasters.
Two recently published articles helps us understand the situation:
But, I don’t have millions. I don’t have thousands. I really don’t even have hundreds. And, I imagine most people are in the same boat, so to speak. So, how can we respond? How can we help?
Look around at the resources we do have. Can we purchase an extra bottle of laundry detergent or give up a cup of coffee at the local drive-through on our way to work? Donations, of supplies or money (even if it’s $5 or $10) can go a long way, partnering with other small donations.
As an author, I have another resource – my books: they are about pets. And, I can encourage a fundraising campaign, giving books to those who donate to Hurricane Harvey pet rescue endeavors. That’s what I’ve decided to do.
National Dog Day was Saturday, about the time Hurricane Harvey hit Texas. In honor of dogs, and helping those in need impacted by this major storm, I’ll give a book to anyone who requests one after they have donated to a pet rescue organization helping animals displaced by Hurricane Harvey. Groups such as the ASPCA, Best Friends Animal Society, Humane Society of the United States, and Austin Pets Alive! are participating in the pet rescue endeavors (you can learn more through the links I’ve provided here).
Email me a copy of the receipt (or some other type of confirmation) that you receive from your donation to one of these groups (or one of your choice that is helping the animals displaced by the hurricane and Houston’s flooding), and I’ll send you a book for free! My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Keep the book for yourself or give to a friend, child, or grandchild. My inspirational stories weave wonderful life lessons and showcase how pets can teach us amazing things.
Many of the pictures we’ve seen have also been inspirational: people helping one another, coming together in community, saving lives, providing hope. That’s what we can do here: provide hope, let others know we care. When our hearts are broken by the images of ravaging flood waters, dogs swimming in feet of water, trying to survive, hurricane damage to businesses and homes, people atop house roofs waiting to be rescued … we wonder what we can do.
I donated yesterday to Austin Pets Alive! with some of the book sale funds I received from events last weekend. I hope you’ll help me help pets affected by this crisis. The book offer will continue through September 15, when I’ll be bringing my new furry friend home (my husband and I are adopting a dog in a few weeks – more about that exciting news in next week’s blog).
Won’t you join me in helping pets affected by this month’s natural disaster? In addition to the book, I will also provide you with a FREE monthly pet-oriented newsletter, which you can also share with your pet-loving family and friends.
Thank you for doing what you can to help people and pets affected by this disaster – I look forward to partnering with you in this endeavor!
ORGANIZATIONS HELPING TEXAS ANIMALS:
Below are links to some of the animal rescue groups helping the animals in Texas:
Gayle M. Irwin is a writer and public relations professional who volunteers with various animal rescue groups. She enjoys sharing her books and her passion for pets and the environment with others.