by Elisa Black-Taylor
ATAAC and a kitten in Mumbai
Good morning readers. I feel the need to spread a little good news today and I've found the perfect groups to showcase. I'd like to tell you about Australian Teens Against Animal Cruelty(ATAAC) and Kids Against Animal Cruelty.
This isn't a "cat only" article, but both groups are involved in helping cats through their work. So please don't beat up on me too badly if the "d" word is mentioned!
ATAAC was founded in May 2007 by Elizabeth Anile and her friend Andrew Glover and was the first group of its kind run totally by teenagers for teenagers. I'd also like to introduce their volunteer Georgia. She assists with rallies, demonstrations and information tables. At 14, Georgia has been a vegetarian for four years.
I'm sorry if I missed any key members of your team. I invite your group to comment at the end if I've missed anything you want the readers here to know.
Elizabeth and Andrew began by helping out with different animal groups a year prior to going out on their own. Their goal was to provide one source where they could keep everyone up to date on their projects. These included their fundraisers, demonstrations, petitions and protests, plus ATAAC's personal projects. They even have their own store and have shipped products all over Australia, plus a few international sales.
MySpace presented Australian Teens Against Animal Cruelty with a MySpace Impact Award for Social Justice. In 2010 they were presented with the World Compassion Award and received Hobsons Bay Young Citizens of the Year special commendation
Co-founder Elizabeth Anile won the 2008 Girlfriend of the Year Award by Girlfriend magazine and was a finalist for 2008 Young Victorian of the Year. She focuses on informing Australian residents how animal abuse is happening in their own back yards. Andrew Glover is an avid video-gamer and loves music. His experience with concert equipment earned them a tour spot with Australian rock band Kisschasy.
This teen group has searched for lost pets, consoled owners who have lost a pet and nursed a newborn lamb through the night. Whatever needs to be done, they're up to the challenge.
They've been everywhere from Mumbai to Egypt to India. All of this while still attending school. They've met actors and actresses involved with animal rights and been in a DVD about factory farming. A project to produce a high school DVD about vivisection and animal rights is in the works.
The goal of Australian Teens Against Animal Cruelty is to write a book aimed at young people on how to lead a cruelty-free lifestyle.
ATAAC has an event this weekend. Puppy Farm Awareness Day will be held Sunday, September 19 at Parliament House in Melbourne, Australia beginning at noon.
Your group is awesome! And just what the world needs.
The other group I'd like to introduce you to is Kids Against Animal Cruelty. They're a new group and I haven't found much information on them. I sent them an email several weeks ago asking for more information and haven't heard back. So I'm kind of flying blind with their group. I do know they worked with the Animal Advocates Alliance Adoption Event back in July. They also crosspost shelter pets on Facebook who are desperate for homes before time runs out.
Kids Against Animal Cruelty has over 1000 members on Facebook and is growing. Wendon and Laura are doing a good job of finding homes for dogs and cats in their community. The goal of Kids Against Animal Cruelty is "to reach out to all kids to make a difference in our world by eliminating the need for kill shelters. EDUCATE, ADOPT, SPAY/NEUTER...A PET IS FOR LIFE!!!"
I apologize for not having more information to offer readers on your group.
I've noticed many adults commenting about their teens starting up groups similar to these two in their own community. This would be so GREAT! Because young people are the answer to many of the cat and dog issues we face.
Teens are the ones who will change the way things are done. They can educate their peers and adults alike in the declawing campaign and help put a stop to it permanently. I hope with their help declawing will see an end in this generation.
Many teens are vegetarians and do a lot in educating the meat eaters out there of the abuse that goes on in slaughterhouses. I'm not saying the world will go vegetarian. I know there will always be people out there who will never give up "anything that once had a face on it." (quote by Ruth. I like the way you put that.) It's a highly personal decision. Groups like these just make people aware of the choices.
Another reason I support these groups is because the teens who run and support these groups are out there with their peers. Chances are they know some of the kids who abuse animals for fun. Or at least suspect them. Maybe they can make a different in stopping this abuse. Either through education or notifying the proper authorities when someone is dangerous. Think of the lives that could be saved, both human and animal, by identifying future animal abusers and nipping their behavior in the bud.
I hope everyone has enjoyed reading about these two groups. I invite them and others like them to comment. Please tell the readers where your groups are located and what you do to help the companion animals and feel free to offer group start up information.
To the readers of Pictures-of-cats.org, I urge you to leave a few words of support for these groups.