Paws for a Moment by Bonny Corbeil

Reflections, Holiday Thanks 

As this year quickly comes to a close, it is a good time for everyone to reflect on the past year.

Reflection is needed to assess both successes and short-comings and to recognize how we can do things better. Your ACC has attempted to communicate with the community on a  regular basis through this bi-monthly column, “Paws, for a Moment.” We recognize that without the support of good citizens like you, we are unable to operate, to keep our doors open to the many needs of homeless, abandoned and abused animals on our island. The ACC Board chose “Help Us Care” as the catch phrase to reflect the fact that without your involvement and partnership with us, there can be no ACC.

We invite the public to become more involved in helping us “grow” our ACC organization. We need your input and time. We are in need of dog walkers and animal lovers who can help give our animals some hands-on attention at the shelter; we need a more dependable and secure financial base to operate from; we need everyone to consider becoming an ACC member to ensure our continued work; we need more public education with our schools; we need to educate the general public on the Anti Cruelty-Act, Bill #25 and to find a way and means to work with our VIPD to deal with those individuals who maliciously and purposefully abuse animals. It is a proven fact that this behavior is a “red flag” for future domestic and child abuse issues. Unfortunately, at present, we lack the funding and other inter-agency “pieces” to effectively address animal cruelty; and to enforce laws.

Animal abuse can no longer be ignored or tolerated on St. John. To turn a blind eye to this kind of intentional abuse is to ignore behavior that will eventually impact our community in other serious ways through growing, excessive bullying; violent behavior and other physical and emotional abuse. Anyone who cares about people should and must care about animal abuse.

Dr. Iris Kern, who has made many strides in domestic violence prevention on St. John, has offered to help our ACC tackle this difficult problem. It is our hope that our new administration will give us the the support we need to deal with animal abuse effectively in the coming years. This column was created to communicate to you, the public, on the work that your ACC is doing on your behalf. We invite your questions; your suggestions and your concerns in helping us to a better job. This column wishes to be a vehicle for us to honestly address the ways to build a better organization! You are invited to write to me at [email protected] with any and all questions you may have in what we do and how we, your ACC, can serve this community better, on behalf of our animals.

More “Christmas for the Animals” Thank Yous:
An apology is owed to some of our wonderful St. John businesses who were not thanked and mentioned in Tradewinds last issue and report on the ACC’s “Christmas for the Animals.” Please accept my apology! I am both amazed and appreciative of the way this community extends itself to our  ACC’s needs. At this time of the year — Christmas — it can be difficult to be sure that all of our volunteer and those who donate are acknowledged and recognized. Please know how much we do appreciate you.

A recent list was received of more folks who helped make this event a success. A sincere thank-you to: Cheech at the Tap Room; Jo at Bamboula; Teri at The Body Deli; Ocean Grill Restaurant; Valerie at Club Cigar II and Sunglasses; Big Planet; Sharon at Best of Both Worlds; Tom at The Canvas Factory; Carlos at Morgan’s Mango; Molly at St. John Editions and Nell; Colette at I Scream.

Another special “Thank you” overlooked is to Kristen Cox and her daughter Kierra Krigger. This mother and daughter are seen everywhere helping out in community events! They arrived early to the event and worked the table taking tickets. Kierra with her friends Sabrikah Rose and Charcie Montgomery, were responsible in approaching the above businesses for donations and wrapping all of them. Please, contact me if I have left anyone out. Our Board Treasurer, Holly Hardy, has just reported that $11,000 to date was raised at this event. Hurray for our great St. John Community!

A PROSPEROUS AND PEACEFUL 2007 TO ALL FROM YOUR ACC!