Spending the day
29 June 2015 (Written By Simone Silva)I went to Animal Ambulance for the first time Sunday, and even though I have been following this wonderful animal family since the beginning of the year, being able to see the amazing work that is done there with my own eyes, was something very special, and I will remember that first day for a very very long time.
The day was filled with lots of hard work, and many activities I had no idea needed to be done to run a healthy and safe animal shelter. Part of this work is washing, medicating and protecting the animals, and it isn’t hard to see that this is a BIG job and is done on a regular basis to keep all those animals so healthy. It was all incredibly eye opening to say the least.
There were many times during Sunday when my heart was overwhelmed with emotions of happiness, sadness, anger, relief, shock, appreciation, gratuity, love, hatred and amazement listening to the stories of how these animals ended up at Animal Ambulance. It is harrowing to hear and understand how heartless and cruel some humans can be as there are stories about some of the animals not only being neglected, but being deliberately hurt out of spite, or for a selfish human’s own benefit. Though part of my experience Sunday had some (expected) sad emotions, most of the day I really just spent feeling in awe of the workers, of Katja, Barend, and in particular Maria, and I have so so much respect for each of you. Each day you are able to positively affect more than 160 lives by giving them a warm place to sleep, and by feeding them and ensuring that they are healthy and happy. You have given the gift of life to so many beings who would otherwise have suffered terrible fates, and you have allowed each of them the freedom to find their personalities again and to show and display their personality to their family - a group of animals and humans who all look out for each other.
There was a new canine arrival when we were there, her name is now Leia, and she is currently just skin and bones. Not only was she physically severely mal nourished, you could see she had completely distanced herself from her environment in order to cope with being alive. She really was completely traumatised by whatever background she had come from, and had to make herself numb to her surroundings in order to survive. I was able to help give her her first wash and medicine bath, and become part of her rehabilitation process, which is also a feeling I will never forget. I cannot wait to see Leia the next time I go to Animal Ambulance, I know she will be a completely different dog because she will have learnt about a real family and how she is supposed to be treated. Leia’s journey is not unique, all of the animals at Animal Ambulance started by needing some rehabilitation to health, but if you just had to look at them without knowing their background, you would never think that they started at the same place as Leia.
I could carry on and on about many moments Sunday which stood out for me, as there are amazing stories of recovery and love wherever you look, but I would rather want to encourage more people to start volunteering so that you can experience this and see it all first hand, as I really think it will change the way you perceive various aspects of your life.
I am very proud to say that I will be a frequent volunteer at Animal Ambulance from now on. Thank you for allowing us into your home and to be so hands on with all of your “family members”, I can’t wait for next time! xxx