Following on from Iggi’s blog post on 5th August, I organised to visit DARG and meet with Edna, one of the amazing fundraisers who, along with all the volunteers, donate a substantial amount of their time to the rehabilitation of a significant number of cats and dogs in need. The most important aspect of their organisation is that they follow a “no-kill” policy, so any animals that come in to their care are assured of as long and as good a life as they could hope for.
In my interview with Edna the main point that we often came back is their continuous need for donations of money, blankets and pet food. When I arrived with some old blankets and a few bags of dog and cat food to hand over, the smiles on the volunteers’ faces were so good to see. The cat food I took was immediately whisked away to feed some hungry mouths that had gone without that day because they didn’t have enough to go around. DARG completely depends on the goodwill of people like you and me, and it’s so rewarding to see how giving them a bit of a helping hand is so gratefully received.
How DARG helps animals and humans
Each animal that’s brought in is treated with care, love and respect. For a lot of these creatures, it’s the first time in their lives that they have heard a soothing voice, or felt a loving touch from a human hand. In the cats area there is a lovely garden to stroll through which is aimed at allowing rescued cats that have just arrived to get the feel and smell of the place, and start feeling at home straight away. They are in the process of building a labyrinth area where they intend to give stressed animals, like guide and security dogs, the chance to rest up and take some chill out time.
Apart from caring for rescued animals, DARG also offers rehabilitation programmes to people with drug dependencies, mentally and physically abused children and adults, cerebral palsy sufferers and the elderly. They give people who are just as much in need of a kind word and a loving hand as the animals, the opportunity to spend time with them, feed them, clean their living areas, walk and play with them. It’s all about giving people the chance to experience the genuine, unconditional love of an animal, and also the opportunity to be responsible for another living creature, even if it’s just for a short time.
It’s not all about money, there are other ways to help
We mentioned in the previous blog post how you can help out – if it’s a cash donation you can visit their online payment page here. If you have household items you are wanting to get rid of they have an extensive wish-list which you can have a look at here. Items on the wish list range from pet toys, collars and leashes, through to a fridge, stationery, paint, hose pipes, and more. Anything that helps to keep the facility running and taking care of the animals.
Of course, the main items they always need, apart from cash for their huge vet bills, are blankets and food. Before you get rid of any of your old furniture, electronic equipment, building materials, garden tools etc, please consider dropping it off at their premises or you can contact them here. Edna is also on a mission to find someone who’ll be kind enough to donate a van or bakkie with a canopy so that they have an additional vehicle to transport the animals in, so anyone who might be able to help on that front would be welcomed with open arms.
Get involved in their cause at WordCamp this year
At the WordCamp event we will be setting up an area for DARG to promote their organisation. Edna, their fundraiser, will b on hand to take any cash donations you would like to make on the day and we’ll also have boxes available for you to donate dog and cat food and old blankets. Please raid your cupboards and bring these items along with you to the event if you can spare anything, we’d really like to make a difference and offer as much support as we can to their cause. There will also be cute pets accessories available to purchase if you want to treat your own little furry friend.
DARG also has a great Facebook page where they post daily updates on their activities and I’ll be sending updates on our campaign to help them over the next few weeks leading up to the event.