This letter from Marc at FosterParrots
It is time, once again, for our annual fundraiser.
While this is the only time we actively solicit donations, our early spring fundraiser is an important event as the money we raise during this 30 day period will be matched by our dedicated friend and benefactor, and will help carry our efforts through a significant portion of the year.
Our fundraiser takes place during the month of March. We are writing to all of our friends to request that, if you are at all inclined to make a donation to Foster Parrots this year, please do so this March. All checks dated during the month of March will be matched in full, making your donation twice as valuable. As always, your contribution is tax deductible, and a receipt will be provided for your tax records.
Many of the over 250 birds now under the care of Foster Parrots are "special needs" birds who, if they are ever to find placement, will require very compassionate and experienced adoptive homes with the ability to deal with a variety of serious behavioral issues.
Had they been surrendered to traditional animal shelter situations, the majority of our parrots would be facing euthanasia merely for behaving like parrots. Posturing, aggression and biting are the natural responses of a normal and frightened prey animal. In traditional shelters that deal primarily with cats and dogs, these are the behaviors that determine life or death for the animals entering the system. Because parrots are not domesticated animals, and because shelters are now experiencing increasing numbers of unwanted parrots, clearly alternative criteria must now be established in order to define the fate of birds coming into the system. It has become evident that there is now an undeniable need for specialized rescue and sanctuary efforts for exotic birds that operate separately and distinctly from the traditional animal control system.
As a no-kill shelter, Foster Parrots evaluates parrot behavior to determine whether a parrot is adoptable or will require permanent sanctuary. In so doing, Foster Parrots, along with other well established parrot rescue facilities, fills a niche in society that has not before been addressed by other animal shelter organizations. We have faced criticism from many who have accused us of being far too strict with our adoption policies. However, our numbers speak volumes. During 2003 Foster Parrots rescued 158 birds and we were able to place 142 birds into well qualified, adoptive homes.
The 2003 year was an exceptionally successful year for Foster Parrots in several other areas. A new parrot rescue and sanctuary organization was "hatched" after a volunteer (and hopeful bird adoption candidate) was inspired to start his own organization on Cape Cod. Under the direction of founder and president Sterling Farrenkopf, "All Cape Parrot Rescue and Sanctuary" ( http://www.allcapeparrotrescue.com
) has already provided services for over 100 parrots in its first year of operation. The efforts of Foster Parrots have also spawned a new Animal Rights organization, "The Angry Parrot", ( www.theangryparrot.org
). Established by Tami Myers (Foster Parrots board member), TAP is dedicated to addressing injustices in the pet trade and to raising awareness to the plight of captive parrots.
Because we believe in the importance of conservation and protecting parrots in their wild places, Foster Parrots was recently involved in establishing a 240 square mile parrot preserve in the country of Guyana. Asked to draft a parrot protection act, signed into law on September 17, 2003, Foster Parrots Ltd. helped establish the Nancy Lewis Cullity Parrot Preserve. Nancy Cullity, a former Foster Parrots Board Member, died of cancer in 2002.
The 2003 year also brought us the inspirational event of making the acquaintance of world famous primate researcher, Dr. Jane Goodall. Marc Johnson was able to speak at length with Dr. Goodall about the parrot crisis and the work of Foster Parrots. Moved by the tremendous difficulties faced by parrots in captivity, Jane Goodall has added her voice to our cause and provided us with a heartfelt quote that we will use to help people begin to understand the tragic implications of a bird behind bars.
Over two hundred parrots within our walls depend on the survival of Foster Parrots, Ltd. If we hope to continue to provide sanctuary and adoption services to the birds that come into our care, and if we hope to continue to work for the greater cause of avian protection and welfare, we must have the support of those who know and love parrots.
We hope that you will participate in our fundraiser this year. As always, we are eternally grateful for any support you can offer at this time, and for all of your faith and support in the past.
Donations may be mailed to: Foster Parrots Ltd., 35 Vernon St., Rockland, MA 02370 or made on our website at Fosterparrots.com
. Thanks so much for your concern and participation.