I’m starting to think that the goal in life is not this static idea of happiness, but rather the constant motion of trying to make the world a better place, in which you will always find a version of happiness that moves with you.
This is why I am dedicating my first NYC TCS Marathon run to Miles for Paws, an animal charity fitness team created from the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC Animals. The Mayor’s Alliance is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit charity whose goal is to transform New York City into a no-kill community by 2015. They are the only umbrella organization for animal welfare in NYC and work with over 150 rescue groups and shelters to ensure that one day no healthy dog or cat is killed in the system simply because there isn’t room for them.
When I think about all the devastating things happening in the animal community—dog fighting, puppy mills, animal neglect and abuse, seal hunting, etc.—I get so overwhelmed that I become frozen by this ideological cycle of abuse. I feel powerless.
I found the Mayor’s Alliance and realized that despite this cycle, there is a counter movement and there are people out there doing amazing things. Instead of becoming consumed by the thought of being powerless, I can get up and actually do something about it.
One of the reasons I chose to support the Mayor’s Alliance is their work not only with rescues and no-kill shelters, but also the city shelters and Animal Care and Control centers. It is so easy to point the finger at these facilities with high euthanasia rates and blame them, but that solves nothing. In order to make a difference, we have to change our attitude and language—It’s not a “their problem” its a “we problem.”
There are so many things in this world that we cannot control, but this is something we can. The Mayor’s Alliance is making a significant difference in the euthanasia rates of our shelters. According to their report, during their first year in 2003 over 31,000 animals were euthanized in Animal Care and Control centers in the city. In their 2013 report, this number was reduced to 6, 124.
My goal by October 30, 2015 is to raise $2,600. Your contribution will go to the Alliance’s many projects that actively work toward making New York City a no-kill community. Every dollar helps, but if you cannot contribute financially I ask that you spread the word, because at the helm of this fight, or any fight, is EDUCATION.
This is my way of being a voice for those that have none. I cannot live in a world where I do not actively attempt to make a difference. Every day I run from this moment on will be for them—the thousands of dogs and cats that wait for their forever home, those that make it there, and most importantly those that do not. I thought that my small efforts could not make a difference in the long run—that no matter what society will always be stuck in this cycle. But then I remembered that I am a part of society and therefore my actions, however small, matter. Every morning I put on my running shoes, I look at my own rescue pup and know that I have made a difference in my sphere of influence— And I have to keep moving forward, one step at a time. Contributing in any way that you can will help us to achieve a no-kill New York City—my version of happiness.
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