Hello, everyone! This is Manuela Rodrigues, Executive Director and President of Amazon CARES, and I want to welcome you to this Rainforest Update. I’ll be keeping you posted every few months with our latest news, campaigns, challenges, and successes. I look forward to staying in touch on a regular basis!
First off, let me extend one last thank you (and a virtual hug) to all of the generous people who donated to our Holiday Matching Campaign. It was a big success, and we met our goal of raising $5,000 during the months of December and January. Because of your efforts, an anonymous donor matched this amount, which means we raised a total of $10,000 for Amazon CARES!
All funds will go directly toward the food, medicine, supplies, and operational expenses that we must meet to keep our animals safe and healthy. Thanks to you, we’ll have the resources to rescue, treat, shelter, and find homes for twice as many abused and neglected street animals in the coming months…and that’s the best gift we can possibly imagine!
100 Street Dogs: The Count Continues
As some of you know, our dear friend Bill Grimes was an Iquitos business owner who lost his life to a terrible storm in the summer of 2016. His memory and his love for animals live on, however, through our 100 Street Dogs Campaign. Launched in Bill’s honor, this campaign aims to spay or neuter at least100 homeless dogs and greatly reduce animal overpopulation on the streets of Peru.
It’s not as easy as it sounds. Our small staff is already stretched to the limit with daily clinic procedures, animal rescues, abandonment cases, and other emergencies. Still, we’ve already spayed or neuteredover 60 street dogs, and we’re working hard to reach 100. As always, we valueyour contributions to the cause. Rest assured we won’t stop until we meet the magic number!
200+ Cats: A Big Finish for Felines
From July to November of 2016, our feline spay and neuter campaign made huge strides for cats! Once again, this effort required a tremendous amount of time, resources, and expertise. Despite these hurdles, we spayed or neutered more than 200 street cats! Add to that the 100+ spay/neuter procedures our vets performed for local pets, and we’ve made a sizable dent in the future feline population.
Wondering what’s involved in rounding up so many stray kitties? Amazon CARES volunteer, Sarita, gives us a firsthand account of her Adventures in Cat Catching on our blog. Check it out!
Dr. Edwin Inga: Animal Hero
Our Chief Veterinarian, Dr. Edwin Inga, has always surrounded himself with animals. Throughout his childhood—filled with dogs, parrots, and turtles—he cared for his pets when they were sick and hated to see any creature in pain. For Edwin, animals were always more than human companions or commodities; they were beings in their own right, deserving of our help and respect.
With the support of his parents, Edwin studied veterinary medicine at San Marcos University in Peru, and turned his love for animals into a full-blown career. In October of 2014, he vacationed in Iquitos and heard about an open veterinarian position at Amazon CARES. Soon after interviewing, he was offered the job, but felt unsure whether he could take on the daily challenge of treating abused and neglected animals. Luckily for us, Edwin’s mother encouraged her son to accept this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!
Since that day, Dr. Edwin’s calm demeanor, expert care, and sheer optimism (in the midst of unspeakable suffering) have saved many hundreds of animals’ lives. Even during his time off—when he’s not playing volleyball or buried in a good book—he researches clinic cases online, seeking out the best possible treatment options. While his patients may express their gratitude with a purr, a nuzzle, or a wagging tail, we’ll come right out and say it: thank you for being an animal hero, Dr. Edwin!
Get to know the people of Amazon CARES with staff profiles like this one: here's another recent profile (of me, Manuela!) on our blog.
Amazon CARES Always Needs You
Thank you so much for your ongoing support! We wouldn’t exist without your generosity. As a reminder, Amazon CARES is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization in the USA, and all of your donations are tax-deductible. We welcome any gift, large or small. Monthly contributions are especially helpful, since they provide us with added financial stability.
Regardless of how you choose to donate, I will personally make sure that your gift is put to good use for the needy animals who count on us and deserve a better life.
With the utmost gratitude,
Manuela Rodrigues Executive Director & President Amazon CARES