Larisa Počivavšek lives in Slovenia and is a prime mover there in raising awareness of the plight of the Spanish galgos and podencos. At the beginning of October she organised a Galgo Fiesta and the first meeting of her newly formed association. This is her report.
The last weekend we spent with our group of volunteers was the weekend full of joy and sighthounds' happiness…
Our group works independently from all the other formal groups and societies of Slovenia and was found with the only aim to help sighthounds and to widly inform public about their problematic issues.
In our new and not yet formally organised goup there are 18 volunteers – most of us are the sighthounds' adopters, trying to turn their world into the much better place for them, using our mutual strength.
Our socialising took place on a beautiful sunny day, on Saturday the 3rd of October 2009, within the fenced area of Cynological Society Pluton in Ložnica near the city of Žalec.
The grass was marvellous – so soft and pleasant and of course confortable to our sensitive sighthounds' »bonny« body structures. Nevermind, we took some blankets to make it even easier for them to lie down and rest after they have been running wild all around the place.
71 people with 40 sighthounds came… There were all kind of them, galgos, greyhounds, lurchers, we even had one podenco.
You probably wonder why this meeting was so very special for us?
The first idea about it has turned up in our heads already in the spring time, when we decided to do something more in order to help sighthounds. That's why we made up our mind to be even more concrete about this particular kind of help, for we thought that just informing couldn't be enough to solve their problems and find them new homes.
So we started the photo-shooting of our adopted sighthounds from all over the Slovenia in June, and were happily surprised by the huge and warm response of people, willing to cooperate in order to do something good for them.
Our professional photographer Dobran Laznik and his friends, who himself has adopted a beautiful galga, took photo-shootings in Maribor, Celje and Ljubljana and designed a beautiful calendar for our group with special care and meaning.
The calender has been named SIGHTHOUNDS' WORLD 2010.
In this purpose the SSW group has made connections with Maria Daines, a world known fighter for animal rights and a great singer as well.
She wrote a poem for us and our cause, so we could publish it on the first page of our calender.
The song goes like this…
My heart is free as I run from the storm
On a warm summer breeze my spirit is born
I rest in your care, your hands lead the way
I follow you home to a bright new day.
Your voice is my hope, my promise of peace
You paint pictures of courage and I am released
No longer the lonely, the lost or betrayed
I am the proud Galgo, the beauty you saved.”
Some volunteers of our group sew the coats and the collars, made especially for the sighthounds. Maria Daines offered us her CD's to be sold in beneficent purposes. We didn't forget to organise our indispensable mini-raffle.
People could buy some of those things for a certain amount of money which was collected all together to be donated for the good of animals.
We have decided to deliver all the money to the two rescue shelters in Spain, Noah's Arc Murcia and Scooby Medina, but of course we didn't forget to donate for our local shelter in Maribor which will obtain one third of the sources, just like the each one of the two shelters in Spain mentionned before.
Since all of our calendars still haven't been sold, we're about to wait for a while and see how much more money are we going to be able to donate. In two weeks all the donations will be officially given away.
We're very happy that our voluntary group SSW will be, at least partly, but with our own work and effort, able to help sighthounds as well as other animals which need help and protection.
We are looking forward to repeat such meeting and these kind of actions next year, but most of all we hope sincerely to find a new home for at least one of the sighthounds.
In addition to our letter we're sending you the »movie« taken in our meeting:
In the video you can also see the photos of some adopted sighthounds appearing on the pages of our calendar, presented in a very subtle and artistic way.
We're also proud of you all and all the people fighting for the better future of these dogs…
SLOVENIAN SIGHTHOUNDS' WORLD (SSW)
Sighthounds Need Our Help