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Volunteering at the Sanctuary

 
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bertnspike
Panther
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Joined: 08 Apr 2006
Posts: 138
Location: E. Central Florida

PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2006 8:21 pm    Post subject: Volunteering at the Sanctuary Reply with quote
There are people I know who would LOVE to come down to S. FL and help you out for a couple of weeks. People who would do things such as cleaning the house & doing the laundry & cooking stuff for Dave to freeze for himself. Maybe cleaning/repairing/refurbishing the barn or an empty holding area. Maybe painting some walls or fences. Maybe mowing the lawn. Maybe running around town picking things up. Maybe filing & sorting. Maybe chopping vegetables.

There are lots of people here in this forum who would most certainly pay for the priviledge & I'm one of them!

You wouldn't have to have hordes of people, just - oh - say 2-4 people at a time, who would be responsible for their own lodging & meals & transport. AAaaand, what if someone BESIDES Dave put it all together & managed it?
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ace1fan
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Joined: 22 Aug 2005
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Location: TIGERHOMES.ORG!!!!!!

PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2006 10:23 pm    Post subject: A League of Its Own Reply with quote
Susan - what a nice post. I was just looking yesterday to see how long it had been since we have any new posts in this thread. Dave is best to answer this one but I can tell you my own experience being involved with supporting the Sanctuary for over 3 years now.

People have to realize when they go to the Sanctuary to see the animals the main house is a PRIVATE residence. Dave does everything he can to keep it that way. There have been a handful of volunteers over the years but Dave prefers to keep it private. The chores of cooking, cleaning, food shopping and prep etc. are all already covered. It is the FUNDS to BUY the food that is NOT COVERED. Dave is a landscaper by professional so the yard work and habitat maintenance is also covered. We all know he is a builder, electrician, data center master to boot. No one walks the property or has any contact with the animals without being under Dave's direct supervision.

As for handling the animals and cleaning habitats - moving the lemurs into secure areas or transferring the Big Cats to their switching stations - no one else does this work except Dave because of risk factors & liability issues. Dave has never had help other than Jason or Dr. Kramer and does not want or need help in that way. Dave has a network of friends with extreme experience and heavy equipment should he need those resources but most of the work he prefers to do himself. He manages with a very small group of close friends who have worked with him for years and that is sufficient.

As for scheduling private tours those are done regularly. People do want to come to and see the animals with these private visits scheduled regularly. Most say - Hey Dave - Thanks for spending an entire morning with us -THIS PLACE IS JUST AWESOME - GREAT JOB WITH THE ANIMALS Exclamation Then they leave without even making ANY donation whatsoever. It is not a "Donation Expected" or Fee of course type visit but you would think people would at least make some contribution. I would NEVER even think of visiting without making a donation. I have watched Dave walk people to the gate shaking his hand with hugs & thanks then they drive off and they don't leave one dollar. Not one penny - then or ever, and on more than one occasion.

Of course, any Gold Member is always welcome to visit and this is one way Dave can acknowledge and thank them for their ongoing support - with advance notice and arrangements of course.

On the Administratitve sides - any work I do for Dave is done from a distance - Adoption Certificates printed, labels made - shipping and packing supplies for the Gift Shop items are usually just mailed for his convenience. Times I did get to visit I took the opportunity to take chairs for the Data Center, treats for the lemurs, just little things but I always left a donation. Almost all website maintenance and other website updates by all involved including the Administrative side of running the Sanctuary is done from a distance which again is what Dave prefers.

In short the BEST way to help is the monetary contributions which still need to cover the basics - Food for the Lemurs and the Big Cats, Power Bills, and the ongoing Data Center costs of Cams and Maintenance. Those are the big ticket items that TigerHomes really stills needs help with and those expenses have never yet been covered fully on ANY monthly basis. So the donations still are the best way for anyone who really wants to help.

It may seem like "old hat" asking members to donate for some but the fact is they still need MORE donations and that most certainly is not asked of the members who are already helping and giving as much as they can. As much as it may seem "old hat" to us imagine how Dave feels being in the position to bring these animals to us on the computer and turning around to care for them finding after years he is still without the support he needs to just cover the basics. People need to undertstand that it is NON-PROFIT and every dollar goes directly to the animals. The 501(c) paperwork should be completed soon to gain that status officially.

If anyone wants to schedule a visit and pay for that privelege I am sure Dave would be more than accomodating and very APPRECIATIVE of those efforts. If anyone can come up with any fundraising efforts - those would also be extremely appreciated.

For anyone who has not yet been to the Sanctuary - there is nothing you could ever find that could compare. When you see and feel the atmosphere you begin to really realize the mission of TigerHomes. You see the tranquility the animals enjoy with the Cam set-up and see how much they enjoy their homes. You begin to really understand the value it brings to them, to the world and to the conservation field. TigerHomes is truly in a league of its own. You become part of it and it becomes part of you.

The peace and beauty and HOPE that Dave has created there will stay with you long after your visit.


Ace
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bertnspike
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Joined: 08 Apr 2006
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Location: E. Central Florida

PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2006 10:53 pm    Post subject: Re: A League of Its Own Reply with quote
ace1fan wrote:
As for handling the animals and cleaning habitats - moving the lemurs into secure areas or transferring the Big Cats to their switching stations - no one else does this work except Dave because of risk factors & liability issues. Dave has never had help other than Jason or Dr. Kramer and does not want or need help in that way. Dave has a network of friends with extreme experience and heavy equipment should he need those resources but most of the work he prefers to do himself. He manages with a very small group of close friends who have worked with him for years and that is sufficient.
Ace


Please notice - I NEVER EVER suggested volunteers going any where NEAR any animals. Nor did I ever suggest that Dave, you, Jason, et al, are not performing your jobs MORE than adequately, and I'd never suggest that any of you did not have the skills required. Does one need a degree in botany to pull Virginia creeper off of a building it's trying to eat?

I guess I'll just tell my side of this story. A friend & I will be at the Redlands Fruit & Spice Park for the orchid show and can easily turn it into a week long (or more) trip. While I am giving all the CASH I can to TH, I would also like to give some of my time and energy while I'm down that way. Certainly I'd make an appointment for a visit in any case. As my visit will take time out of Dave's busy day, I'd like to make up for it by doing some mundane task that will free Dave to do something more important. I would never visit TH without donating.

As I was thinking about this, I also thought others might like this idea & maybe it could bring in some extra $$$ for TH. Heck, you could work with Elderhostel & limit it to 4 active over-55 adults with specific skills a year AND charge an outrageous price for allowing them to do your grunt work.

Anyway, I guess it's not a good idea. I felt that the tone of your response, Ace, was condescending. You probably didn't mean it that way Rolling Eyes but I thought I should explain myself better. Cool
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ace1fan
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 21, 2006 11:44 pm    Post subject: Working Together Reply with quote
Susan wrote:

Quote:
Anyway, I guess it's not a good idea. I felt that the tone of your response, Ace, was condescending. You probably didn't mean it that way


No Susan it was not meant to be condescending. It is a shame if it was ever interpretted that way at all. Everyone who has been involved over time tries to give people a clear picture of the Sanctuary workings and what is needed so people who care do understand. If you didnt care you wouldnt ask and those suggestions have already been made time and time again with the same answers. If my efforts to convey that were misinterpretted in any way I am sorry.

Fact is my first thoughts was years ago - Hey I can show up and HELP Exclamation Don't think I didn't offer. It took me some time and caring enough to understand and guidance from Dave to realize although those IDEAS ARE APPRECIATED and only come from people who care, the volunteering aspect is just not what is needed for many reasons.

If he wanted volunteers on-site he could have had that in place years ago and I heard that straight from him. The Forum is a great place to ask questions and really get to know what the Sanctuary needs from its members and that is financial support. Now that feedback came to me straight from Dave also and all I want to do is share that and my own experience - not look for approval or disapproval of my own feelings or efforts vs. anyone elses.

We each have to do what we think is best. Of course it would be WONDERFUL if you could go to the Sanctuary while you are so close. You will love it and then get to hear the feedback directly yourself from Dave.

Many times when you try to explain, people may view it as rude or crude but it is NOT. It is just the facts of trying to maintain the Sanctuary and at the same time having members value what is being asked and just doing their part to try to understand what is really needed.

We all can be included that way. I hope you get to schedule a visit Susan. You will love it. We all need to remember to support eachother and work together and I do believe that is what we are trying to do. There is no time for anything that is a negative here when we have so much good we have accomplished together and that's because of every one of you. Let us know when you go so we can get excited for you Cool

LOL


Ace
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tigerdave
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Joined: 07 May 2004
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Location: where all the animals are !

PostPosted: Fri Sep 22, 2006 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
Sue you are already more then welcome to come visit so e-mail or PM me ! The Fuirt and Spice park is about 5 minutes from my house so you MUST come see me and the animals !!!

As far as all those other things Ace is right that is not what I need help on what i need help with is the money PERIOD !!! for example my power bill for last month was over 900.00 and that is more then the donation for this month !!! So as you can see MONEY is the BIG issue and the best way to help me and the Sanctuary !!! I have no problem maintaining the property grounds but I have problems paying the bills !!! So please if you have friends who want to help point them in the direction of our gift shop that is the BEST way they can help me !!!

Thank youi so much !!!
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