Keith: “Scott, I want to diverse for a moment, uh, before I get to ask you. I ask all my guests this question and that question is: Some people ask how you can spend time, money and resources advocating and protecting animals when there is so much human misery in the world. What do you say to critics who might say that to you?”
Scott: “Oh, this is a great question, (laughs) one that we have been asked on many occasions. And, you know, the reality is that we have responsibility for all facets of our world. We have a responsibility to the damage that we have done. We have a responsibility to live in a world that is mutually protective and mutually respectful of every facet of our world.
And that involves elephants. We are the ones that have brought them here and caused the compromise and we have to be the ones that give back. We have to be the ones that repair the damage that we have caused.
I also believe that there is no limit to the amount of resources available for creating our world into a better place. There is more than enough money to go around to help people, animals, dogs, cats, whatever it may be. There is more than enough money in our world. We have to just focus it in the right directions.
And we all have a role in our world. My role, what I have fallen into is to help elephants. Other people help dogs. Other people help humans. We all have a responsibility. We all have a purpose and this is where I can make the most positive difference for a better tomorrow.”
Keith: “Well that is a great answer because the bottom line is if we all do something then good things will happen and that is a fantastic answer. Now, is there a website that can provide us with more information about Global Sanctuary For Elephants?”
Scott: “Yes, absolutely. It is uh, quite simple, uh, W W W dot GlobalElephants dot org and from there you can get to our facebook page and Twitter pages and Instagram. And uh, it is going to be an exciting few months to come with our new development and hopefully, uh, arrival of elephants quite soon.
There is a huge need here in South America, in actually all of South America. They are setting a global trend. Five countries have already banned performing elephants. Brazil is about to do the same. Uruguay is about to do the same, as well. And soon this is going to be, uh… an entire continent that has banned performing animals, performing elephants and they also have a progressive solution as well with the development of Elephant Sanctuary Brazil. So, exciting days, exciting time and we are really looking forward to giving back to some of these elephants.”
Keith: “You know, I… It is interesting you mention that because we have had Tim Phillips and Jan Creamer on as guests a couple of times from Animal Defenders International. And they have been doing similar work as far as circus lions and big cats and other animals are concerned. And it is really, really great to see people working so hard to take animals that have been leading sometimes incredibly, uh, cruel lives, and giving them another chance.
And, now, on the website can I learn more about how I might be able to volunteer or donate to your organization?”
Scott: “Yes, absolutely. There is a link at the top of the page of how you can help and there is obviously multiple ways. A lot of times we have people say ‘I do not have any money to give, what can I do?’ There is always something to do and the internet is a perfect opportunity to just share. You know, share the facebook post, share the information and you never know who that is going to reach out to. And that could possibly make a substantial difference for any organization.
And as far as volunteering, we do not have a lot a, uh, volunteer projects at this point but that is going to evolve pretty soon, as soon as we move onto the property, uh, that is going to create different alternatives. It is not always easy to get into Brazil from outside the United States. There is a pretty extensive visa process but we will help people with that, too, as we develop our volunteer programs”
Keith: “And you mentioned a crowd-fund program is starting soon. Be sure to let me know when it starts and I will put that on my facebook. That can give you a help, too. So…”
Scott: “Oh, absolutely. It is a huge help. It…you know, the reality of… the main purpose of crowd-funding campaigns is exposure, to a lot of people doing a little bit. It does not take that much. And, you know, we talked about it earlier, with everyone doing their part it is amazing the difference a few bucks can make and, you know, $5,$10,$15, whatever it is, it is unbelievable the difference it can make when it all comes together.
In Tennessee we actually rescued one elephant, basically, on $2 donations. People from…, you know, a bunch of people donating $2 to $5, you know, allowed us to rescue an elephant. And it is everyone coming together really makes a, makes a substantial difference.”
Keith: “That is a great story and it is something I think we all should remember because I… many times I will say ‘Gee, you know, I wish I could help but what is my five or ten or twenty bucks going to do’. Forgetting that maybe there are thousands of other people sitting there saying the same thing.
And, uh, Scott, you know, this has been really interesting and we have run out of time. And I want to thank you for taking the time to join us.”
Scott: “Oh, it is absolutely my pleasure. I appreciate the opportunity to share a little bit about what we are doing and hopefully we… opening up minds and hearts to to helping captive elephants.”
Keith: “It is really an amazing story and I hope that, uh, we can have you on again sometime in the future and you can bring us up to date on your progress in Brazil.”
Scott: “Well that would be, uh, my pleasure to do so and with the exciting developments here let us not wait too long. It is going to be an exciting couple of months.”
Keith: “Okay. That sounds good. I mean, if it is new and you have news do not hesitate to get back to me. Just send me an email and say, ‘Hey, we have got 8 million elephants (Scott laughs) and uh, everything is going cool’… And you have got to really catch us with us here because this is, I think, is the kind of thing that is so interesting and I know to our audience it is much more interesting than just seeing or hearing about elephants standing on each other in a circus ring or something.”
Scott: “We could spend an episode on and multiple facets of each elephant life, you know, just talking about the social dynamics, there is so much to understand and learn about them. So, we welcome the opportunity to share and we will definitely keep you up-to-date.”
Keith: “Well that is great because, Scott, you are certainly optimistic and an inspirational example of how animal advocates are helping animals and improving or saving their lives. I am sure I speak for every one of our listeners when I say ‘Keep up the good work, Scott!'”
Scott: “Thank you so much … We will do what we can.”
Keith: “Thank you for sharing with us the work that you and your colleagues are doing at Global Sanctuary For Elephants. And I want to thank Mark Winter, Executive Producer and co-founder of Pet Life Radio and the sponsors who make this program possible. Please join us for each and every episode of Awesome Animal Advocates and be sure to tell your friends about us. And if you know of an individual or organization who should be featured on Awesome Animal Advocates just mail me at: Keith@MaxAPooch.com. That is Keith, K E I T H @ MAXAPOOCH dot com. Remember, until we meet again, when you do a good thing for animals you help to make the world a better place for humans and animals.”
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Listen to “Elephants in Brazil?”
How You Can Help Donate to Global Sanctuary for Elephants
Global Sanctuary For Elephants website
Global Sanctuary For Elephants YouTube Channel
Resource: Episode 67 of Awesome Animal Advocates on the Pet Life Radio Network. Keith Sanderson, host. Interview with Scott Blais is entitled “Elephants in Brazil?”