During this time when all Canadians are being asked to protect each other through physical distancing, we want to let you know how we are managing our critical work during this time.
Governments might not consider our organizations to be essential services, but we do. We see our work on behalf of animals as just that; absolutely essential for animals and human society as well. Our goal is nothing less than an entire restructuring of society to one that no longer interacts with animals and the natural world in a violent and exploitative way.
Nevertheless, we are good global citizens, so we too have altered our way of working to do our part to slow down the transmission of the COVID-19 virus.
We are complying with Health Canada guidelines, and staff members are now working from home. All of our campaign work continues. Some of our processes are slowed down as it is now more difficult to gain information through ‘Freedom of Information’ and ‘Access to Information’ requests. Our team of volunteers no longer come into the office, but many continue to research and write from their own homes. We continue to meet monthly by phone with our cross-Canada ‘No Pets In Research’ volunteer group. And, we conduct staff and board meetings via conference calling. Our vital work continues.
We do miss each other and our usual routines, just as many of you miss the activities you enjoy. We have always been a very social office and work well as an extended team of staff and volunteers. Five days a week we have shared healthy lunches together, to nourish our bodies and to enjoy each other’s companionship before returning to work. We have consulted with each other and brainstormed together. We have interacted with and cared for the beloved cats who live at our office.
It might sound like our usual routine is all fun and games, but we work hard, and frequently for long hours. We deal with disturbing information, images, and reports that often leave us heartbroken. But, the daily companionship of our team mates and cat friends has always made the challenge of our troubling work more manageable. And, we are missing that support now in this time of social distancing; just as we know many of you are missing the personal contacts that enrich your lives too.
For those who are wondering about our wonderful office kitties, Lia and Liz alternate days to provide daily care for them. The cats are missing the other human companions they usually see every week, but they are living rich, active lives and are much loved. Many of you, our friends and supporters, are facing difficult times too. We know many of you personally, and are aware that some of you have conditions that make you vulnerable to this virus. We encourage you to isolate as much as you are able, and we hope that you stay strong and healthy. You are part of our family and your well being matters so much to us.
For every one of you who are our friends, donors and supporters, our most sincere thanks – now more than ever. So many of you have stuck with us – and the animals – through bad times and good. When many of you have experienced hardships in your own lives you remained dedicated to helping animals. You have truly widened your circle of compassion to include every living being on this planet. And we are grateful for every one of you.
Please know that the trust that you, our donors and supporters, have placed in us is taken very seriously. Our work continues on all of our campaigns as we adapt to working in different ways to achieve our goals.
With gratitude and best wishes to you,