Fall has officially arrived and although VFA has been on a recent small hiatus, we are ready to get back into gear for the new season and the ever-approaching 2010! We have made great impact for animals of many species and situations in the past year and have exciting plans for the next couple months, not to mention our many goals for the upcoming year...
Ringling is soon coming back to Pittsburgh and with the arrival of a new arena next year for our Stanley Cup team, we would love to make this the circus's final visit to the city. On a related note, the Giant Eagle/Shrine Circus Partnership campaign is ready to heat up once again as we prepare to expose abusive footage taken at Shrine Circus's most recent trip to Mellon Arena. While native Pittsburgh wildlife has been in long preparation for the colder months, we've just finally dug out our jackets and with the upcoming commercial popularity of “fur season”, we will be renewing our fur campaign efforts for the winter. Our veg newspaper boxes have been a hit and we need to keep them stocked with literature!
BUT first, before VFA can achieve any of this, we are desperately in need of your help! We have faced significantly more expenses than planned for this year, and the collapse of the economy unfortunately brought about a significant decrease in donations. The combined effect has left us extremely short on funds, to the point that we have had to forgo taking part in some events that we usually participate in, and have not been able to accomplish as much as we usually do due to our limited fiances.
Regardless of the severe lack in donations and financial limitations, we have buckled down significantly and pitched in when necessary with our own personal funds (which are themselves rather low!) and continued to accomplish many great strides for animals.
Here are some of VFA's achievements so far this year:
- Challenged and spoke out to the media against Brady's Run and Westmoreland County goose hunts
- Protested Shrine Circus, in which a VFA volunteer obtained video evidence of circus animal abuse, as well as provided over a thousand leaflets with a presence of every showing as well as a main protest.
- In continuing efforts to abolish the promotion of animals in entertainment, VFA launched a campaign against Giant Eagle's annual Shrine Circus sponsorship and held 3 related protests complete with our own self-designed "Giant Evil" campaign signs and banner, as well as passed out hundreds of our Giant Evil leaflets, educating people about Giant Eagle's evil connection with circus animal abuse.
- With the help of simply two extremely generous donors in benefit of World Farm Animal Day, VFA placed four newspaper boxes throughout the city and kept them stocked with vegetarian starter kits for the public.
- Experienced yet another Foie Gras Free Pittsburgh Campaign Victory! Upon VFA sending letters and video footage to Toast! Restaurant as well as adamant phone negotiations to educate the managers about the inherent cruelty of foie gras production, VFA's Foie Gras Free Pledge was ultimately signed, making Toast our latest local victory in our Foie Gras-Free Pittsburgh campaign!
- Launched a fur campaign and protested two major department stores, Macy's and Saks, against their sale of fur, as well as passed out hundreds of leaflets educating the public about the cruel reality of fur and fur trim production.
- Had hard working volunteers present from the investigation of Tiger Ranch to the rescued cats' ongoing care and adoptions, collected and delivered donations for the rescued cats, as well as received media attention for exposing the humane law officers' involvement in their continuous clearance of this wretched local slow-kill sanctuary.
- Tabled at several events, including Meat Out with information on factory farming and going vegan, as well as an Animal Adoption and Care Fair.
- In the area of animal rescue alone, VFA volunteers have:
- Rescued, provided immediate foster and veterinary care, and adopted out a terrier and kitten, both dumped at a workplace
- Located a lost Irish Setter, arranged overnight stay, and reunited him with his guardians.
- Rescued an emaciated and unaltered male lab with porcupine quills embedded into his snout and running loose during a snowstorm, provided veterinary care and a foster home for the dog until he was recently adopted to a loving home.
- Engaged in various Trap-Neuter-Return projects in order to spay and neuter feral cat colonies, ending the cycle of death and suffering caused by overpopulation.
- Located a gosling with a large and severely embedded fishing hook, captured and provided transport for them to a licensed wildlife rehabilitator, who was able to remove the fishing hook and release the gosling
- Most recently, VFA volunteers have taken on the projects of a mum and eight kittens from three various litters, provided medical attention, and while mum and a male have already been spayed and neutered, the seven young ladies will grow fast and we will very soon need funding for their spay surgeries. The 9 beautiful new adoptables are viewable at VFA's Petfinder.
It is with your help only that VFA can continue to help animals in need and accomplish even more of our goals. We have great plans for the fall season right through the new year, but we won't get far without your support! Please remember that VFA is an all-volunteer organization, so every dollar you send goes directly to the actions, campaigns, and rescues that we do. Local animals are helped with the money you donate. Each demonstration we organize requires some amount of money, and because crises are so unpredictable, we need to have funds available in the case that animals are in dire need of help.
Please support us in this effort with a donation of $20, $50, $100, or whatever you can afford. Your donations go a long way in our work to make Pittsburgh a livable city for all - humans and animals.
Checks can be made out to Voices For Animals and sent to:
Voices for Animals of Western Pennsylvania
Post Office Box 2751
Pittsburgh, PA 15230
Thank you in advance for your kindness and generosity!
For The Animals & The Earth
Voices for Animals of Western Pennsylvania