In 2020 my husband and I started visiting some of the many animal shelters in the Algarve looking for a dog to adopt. We felt overwhelmed by the huge amount of animals. Each of the dogs we met deserved a forever home but we could only help one. This was not a pain free decision. In 2021, re thinking the situation, we decided to adopt a second dog and we noticed that many of the dogs we had seen the previous year still had not found a home. We learned that this is for the simple reason that the amount of dogs are hopelessly outnumbering the available adopters. Sadly, a large number of beautiful dogs will end their life in a shelter after years of waiting for that somebody who would fall in love with them.
Since last year the situation got even worst with many abandoned puppies adding to the problem. Every week dog shelters have to take in unwanted litters, dumped in the countryside or thrown in plastic bags in or near rubbish bins on the roadside. This adds extra pressure to the already stretched limits of the shelters which are run by volunteers who give their time, energy and money to help animals let down by fellow citizens.
To care for these puppies is a challenging and exhausting task for the volunteers and the older dogs in the shelters pay the price. With the never ending stream of cute puppies in need of homes, these older dogs are even more unlikely to be adopted.
I wanted to do something to help and, as a result, the idea for the project was born.
During the whole year 2022 I will offer my paintings in an unconventional way to help dogs in need.
I don’t want to be paid for my work. If you would like to own one of my paintings, I would ask you to donate the money directly to one of the charities I work with. As a thank you for your donation, I will send you the painting as a gift. You can be sure that 100% of your donation will support the chosen charity and I will provide you with the information on how your donation helped a dog.
Of course, I am happy to send you more photos and any other information you would require to decide if one of my paintings is the right artwork for your home or a meaningful present to someone dear to you. If you are visiting or living in the Algarve, we could arrange a private viewing of the original. When you are happy with the painting, I will send you the payment details for the charity and most importantly, I will give you a reference number for your payment. When I receive the confirmation that your donation has arrived with the charity I will post the painting to you. This process can take a few days, as these charities are very busy but, I will stay in contact with you to confirm when your painting has been posted.
Talking to the charities to set up this project made me realise how much of an inspiration and moral support my project gives to the volunteers who sometimes feel overwhelmed and as forgotten as the dogs they rescue and care for.
I can create the art – you can give it a meaning.
Together we can take art to another level and inspire others.
I have chosen two charities, the Tiny Shelter Albufeira and StreetLife.
Tiny Shelter Albufeira (registered charity number 516 908 936) is very well known in the Algarve for their tireless efforts to rescue dogs out of abusive situations and serious neglect. As the name indicates “The Tiny Shelter” has only space for a limited number of animals but, the charity is also feeding street dogs in the area and monitoring their health. The Tiny Shelter always provides help to a number of dogs with very costly health problems, many of them victims of human violence and hit and run accidents. If you would like to help towards the medical costs for one of the dogs, this would be the charity for you.
Website (currently in German language only) http://www.tinyshelter.eu
StreetLife Animal Sterilisation Programme
StreetLife (registered charity number 515 892 750) is a charity with the sole aim to sterilise dogs in the Eastern Algarve. Since launching in 2017, StreetLife has sterilised more than 650 dogs, preventing the suffering of many thousands of dogs. As each female dog can give birth to dozens of puppies in their lifetime, every single sterilisation is one step in the right direction. The most effective way to reduce animal suffering is to reduce the number of unwanted puppies been born.
If you wish to help preventing newborn puppies suffering and dying in the Algarve, this is the charity for you. For more information, please have a look at StreetLife’s website www.streetlife.pt or on their Facebook page.
A note at the end
If you read about the charities and you find it difficult to decide who you want to give your donation because their work is equally important and deserves our help, there is an easy solution. You can share your donation equally amongst both charities. Please contact me!
So far these four young ladies were sterilised thanks to people who decided to support the project.
One donation helped to pay towards little Walters vet bills. He suffered a stroke after a major surgery and is now recovering in his forever home.
Under the care of his adopter Walter is making progress.