Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Ya Mon!! Deborah Saves Again!!!

When you work in animal welfare, you have to try hard to keep your sense of humour. Deborah with Jamaica Community Animal Welfare makes sure those at Animal-Kind-International keep theirs!!

Deborah sent AKI these pictures and the background story. Yes, that is Deborah in the purple shirt. And yes, she rescued that dog!

Black Dog: Ok Deb you got her, now pull!
Me: Can you help? She's heavy
Black Dog:, cause I don't have any hands!
Me: Well with all the food I give you every week couldn't you at least try?
Black dog:
Me: She's slipppping....
Black Dog: Ok, here grab my paw! But it'll cost you an extra bowl of food.
Me: Ok, deal
Me: Ok she's up! I got her!
Black Dog: Great!I know you're gonna give her all the food, so can I get mine first?

So tonight another homeless dog is safe, well-fed and loved because one of the most selfless and dedicated animal-warriors in Jamaica has done what many people would never do and that is to save an animals life. For more information about Deborah and her organization or to donate towards her and Animal-Kind Internationals rescue efforts please click HERE

xoxox Nicole

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Surrounded By Love..........

It never ceases to amaze me the incredible people that I am constantly surrounded by on a daily basis. This morning I received a voicemail from one of my closest friends Shelley and she informed me that she found a baby hawk that fell from its nest. She was very worried as its beak looked broken and the "mom" was flying around the houses going crazy. She didn't know what to do and was looking for advice. Unfortunately I was sick in bed all day with the flu and didn't get her message until this evening. When I went to message her on facebook this was what was waiting for me in my inbox:

"All is well. I took the wee bird to the Wildlife Centre. It was a pigeon - I was not saving its baby, I was stealing its dinner. For 5 seconds I felt like a fool. Then I said to the girl, a life is a life. She said, we love pigeons here, go down that hall. And there, through one way glass I saw, pigeons!, lots of recovering pigeons. Those of us, who understand this, understand this. I left them with $50; in thanks. She said to me, If you had brought us a mouse, or a rat, we would have taken it. Nicole, what wonderful work we do. I could not have picked up that bird today. I could not have coped, if it had not been for our kittens and you support and reassurance. Please cut and paste this into your blog. This is the most satisfying work I have ever done. Feel better, wonderful girl. Lots of love Shelley" *

*Not only is Shelley an avid animal lover, she is also an incredibly talented photographer*

Most people I know would probably laugh at this story, but for me and so many others out there, these are the stories that keep us going. Knowing that if and when we find an animal in need (no matter how big or small) there will be individuals on the other end, like the staff and volunteers at the Toronto Wildlife Centre, that will greet us with open arms!


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas - 2010!!

*Quincey during Christmas 2009*

Merry Christmas everyone!! No matter what you may be doing today whether its having a big dinner with your family, friends or with your furrbabies I wish you all a very Merry Christmas. Some eco-friendly tips for the day include:

1. Re-use all gift bags, tissue paper and tags - put them all in one big bag or box and save them for 2011!!

2. Turn down the heat if you are having a lot of people over - between body heat and flowing alcohol no one will notice that the furnace is not on

3. Keep all chocolates up and away from the reach of pets - remember chocolate is toxic to dogs

4. Don't like a gift you received? Either donate it to a local womens shelter or save it for another occasion to re-gift!! Shhhhh I won't tell!! Less waste for the planet and a heavier wallet for you!

Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy & successful 2011

xoxoxox Nicole

Monday, December 20, 2010

Load Up On Fruit & Veggies Minus The Plastic!!

My family and I have been using Credo Bags for almost two years now and we absolutely LOVE them! We love fruits and veggies in our house but it was always so frustrating for my dad and I to make those heart healthy choices while having no option other than use those petroleum based mini produce bags to package it all in! Thankfully two years ago my best friend Kristina and I came across Credo Bags at The Green Living Show in Toronto. We immediately picked some up for ourselves and family to give away as gifts. The re-usable produce bags are extremely lightweight, made from organic cotton and very future friendly. There is hardly a week that doesn't go by when I am asked at the grocery store where I got the bags and how I like them. Hopefully in the near future people will be forgoing the produce bags in Toronto as they have been the larger plastic bags for groceries and purchases. The Credo Bags company isn't limited to produce bags. They also carry bags for bulk, baguettes, wine and snacks.


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Perfect Stocking Stuffer!!

Pretoma's 2011 calendar will have your friends and family feeling fishy throughout the year as they pin up this beautiful calendar on their wall! Whether it is at home or work the stunning images of critically endangered sharks and sea turtles will bring a smile to any conservationists face. All money raised from the sale of the calendars will go back into Pretoma's fight against shark finning, long-lining and sea turtle conservation work throughout the waters and shores of Costa Rica! It's a win-win situation that will have a great impact on protecting our beloved oceans and the creatures they sustain! Contact Pretoma today - I have already ordered mine!!!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Gorilla Conservation Goes Pedal Powered!

Hi this is Sam at the Gorilla Organization’s Ugandan resource centre. The last couple of weeks have been very exciting for us. We have launched a brand new gorilla consrervation project in Western Uganda – Africa’s very first pedal powered cinema for conservation! This innovative cinema will be showing educational conservation films to school children and communities in some of the most rural villages on the edge of Mgahinga National Park. Prior to the launch of this project, many of the children, and even their teachers, had never seen a film before – and many had never seen images of gorillas.

Here is a photo of the pedal-powered cinema in action. The viewers take it in turns to pedal the bike, which generates enough energy to power the film!


Madeline Westwood, the director of the Great Apes Film initiative, who is partnering with the Gorilla Organization on this project, and Colin Tonks, the “wonder technician” and inventor of the cinema, came to Uganda from the UK to set this project running.

The first film showings were amazing – at one screening as many as 800 children came along to enjoy the Gorilla Organization’s film. And they were so excited – it was wonderful to see. The bike adds an extra element of audience participation to the screenings and children where queuing up to do some pedaling and power the film!

The children were amazed at what they saw. Some were so interested in the gorillas, and are now so desperate to protect them that they wanted us to make sure that their parents could watch the film too – I have no doubt that each and every one of them went home to tell their families about what they had seen. This is a huge step for gorilla conservation – the more local people who what to protect the gorillas, the more likely the gorillas are to survive long into the future.

As well as providing invaluable conservation education, the bikes provide an entirely clean source of power. No petrol is needed, no electricity is needed and as a result there is no negative environmental impact of showing these films.

Conservation education is now reaching remote communities, villages with no electricity and a whole host of others who have never before been able to see films or access this type of education – for this we are extremely proud. In the three weeks that the project has been running 11,600 school children, 184 teachers, 110 soldiers and 46 park rangers, all living around the Ugandan gorilla habitats, have seen the films – wow!

Here is a photo of children transfixed by the film and the bike in motion!

For more information about The Gorilla Organization please visit: