By Heather Conley
Two Saturdays ago, a busload of us were taken to Tarqui to see the FAAN dog rescue operation there. I was just an ordinary person on the bus and
here’s what I saw…
Our hosts were the advisory board of FAAN, one of the largest dog rescue groups working in our area, and of course Jose Gomez, the guy on the ground who has been running the shelter for the last several years.
Also present was Leo Duran, the computer tech guy, who lent his services as translator.
Other guests on the bus included gringos who in various ways have included their time, talents and dineros to the welfare of homeless and injured dogs.
And then there were the rest of us, ordinary Cuenca residents who care.
We were old and young. We were black-brown-and-white. We were Ecuadorian and gringos. We were dog lovers.
The event was organized as a big thank you and as an opportunity to let folks see and understand the work.
The free event included the bus transportation, the breakfast reception in a private home, the opportunity to spend time with the puppies and dogs, and a lovely vegetarian meal prepared by a local family.
My take-away was that this effort is different.
This group has big plans.
This group is also professional – it has the talents required to take a dream to fulfillment.
This group also imagines a big tent: It invites all.
Ecuadorians with gringos, splinter groups with other groups. And finally, this group has a small and growing endowment.
You know that $20,000 matching fund announcement we’ve all been hearing about?
It will jumpstart the purchase of land and the construction of a proper shelter.
I understand some $50,000 has already been pledged toward the estimated $100,000+ needed for the purchase of land and basic infrastructure so they can move the dogs by the end of the year.
Speaking of shelters, I learned that there are limited legal protections for dogs or shelters in Ecuador. I learned there is not a single shelter in Ecuador that is built to North American standards.
This FAAN group aims to change that.
FAAN has lots of dreams. And one of its organizers for the Saturday event, Victoria Lynne, eloquently urged each of us to identify our “Super Powers”, which taken together would make a beautiful tapestry of success.
If you would like to learn more contact Rosemary at info@FAANecuador.org