Help can take myriad forms. For labeling purposes, help in the Rescue world takes the following forms:
-Catches/Rescues: safely containing and bringing an abandoned rabbit to safety
-Adopting: committing to loving and caring for a rabbit indoors for his/her life span
-Fostering: caring for and loving an adoptable or sanctuary rabbit in your home until a forever home is found
-Networking: spreading the word about rabbit care, adoption and the bleak situation for domestic rabbits on Long Island via social media, in person or any form of communication
-Events: attending and/or helping coordinate education and fundraising events
-Transports: bringing supplies, donations or rabbits from one place to another (often “far” distances)
-Donations: in priority order of their need for our Group at the present time: time, money, supplies
-Bunny Chores: taking that aforementioned donated time and spending it cleaning, feeding and snuggling our foster and sanctuary rabbits
-Collecting Newspaper and Other Supplies: We’ve got to line our litter boxes somehow…
-Emails and Phone Calls: responding to the 100+ contacts we get per month
-Scheduling: adoptions, volunteer shifts, education sessions and events
-Positive Vibes: Energy exists and moves! Although intangible to some, the positive vibes are amongst the most valuable forms of help you can give!
I think I covered all the major categories of help, but even if I glossed over one or some, you should get the idea of just how much it takes to make this all happen. We are saving more lives than ever before; just because the team is great at doing so doesn’t mean the workload decreases ever or at all! For every individual rabbit saved, we need many hours of volunteer time and hundreds or thousands of dollars (yes, per rabbit) in donations depending on length of time in foster care, medical needs, etc.
To those on the outside, it might seem “easy”—just go rescue that rabbit, pop her in a cage and a life is saved. In truth, an efficient and effective Rescue Group takes way more than that. We were involved in a rescue this week of two rabbits over the course of 4-5 days. That rescue took place well over an hour east from the volunteers who were able to coordinate this particular case. They didn’t balk at the distance or even at the cold weather on the day that Orion (black and white) was rescued. When Luna (brown and white) was brought to safety, getting her transported west toward our most-frequented rabbit-savvy vets proved a bit more challenging and the ensuing conversation amongst volunteers and supporters inspired me to write this today.
No, I’m not bragging about how much we do. No, I’m not flinging guilt at those who don’t offer frequent tangible help (PLEASE see the Positive Vibes lines above). No, I’m not complaining about what this takes—it’s volunteer. No one “makes” me do this.
When you feel inspired, scan the list above and know you’re never too far to help in some kind of way. And every second of help, in any form, is treasured and appreciated, always. Much love.