Support within the European Parliament for an end to bear farming in Asia continues to grow with over 50 MEPs, representing 13 European countries, supporting a European Parliament seminar: “Bear farming, animal cruelty and the development of animal protection in China”.
It was early November and there she was sitting in the Hong Kong departure lounge by the gate for Hanoi. Virginia McKenna had just flown in overnight from London but looked fresh as a daisy and was raring to go. We were leaving for Vietnam where we were to meet up with Tuan our Vietnam Director and team, and join freelance journalist Simon Parry who was doing a story about the farmed bears.
How much I'll miss him – but how thrilled that he’s gone to his forever home in the UK. I am of course talking about our beautiful Tremor – a dog we rescued in May 2008 during the horrible, devastating earthquake of Chengdu. A dog who has been such a big part of the lives of all of our staff in China, and particularly Caroline, our vet nurse, and myself, who shared (and adored) him on site.
What a time we had – Dave (who co-presented with me at the evening shows), Gill, Nicky, Lara, Sue, Elaine and Fiona and our amazing support groups across the country - as our Roadshow swung into action this year.
Once again Irene, Jessica and Gina came up trumps with a superb World Animal Day event in a huge shopping precinct in Guangzhou, where people had gathered to celebrate sharing our lives with dogs and cats. About 20 of our gorgeous Dr Dogs turned up with their proud and glowing family and the time flashed by with barks and laughs reverberating around the hall.
True kindness shines when we hear about a selfless gesture by some friends of one of our ex-vet nurses Hayley, who were married in August of this year and asked that guests donate funds to the bears in lieu of wedding presents. Hayley (also looking gorgeous on the right in the photo) has written a little update about Gail and Tony’s special day – and it only leaves me to send a massive bear-sized thank you and hug from all in the team of Animals Asia to you both for being so incredibly kind to animals suffering so many miles away and to wish you both lifelong happiness and joy.
I'm currently in the middle of our UK Roadshow, so here's a post for our lovely UK supporters:
Every week, our vet and bear teams from both China and Vietnam send over reports of all the goings-on on site. Bears that are skittish in the spring, and enjoying the warm summer days, then eating more or sliding into winter dormancy and snoozing for days or even weeks in their dens.
It was good to see many old friends from Germany again and to meet such lovely new friends too. Faces glowing and so excited to catch up with all the development in China as they waited to greet Jasper and friends in house 2, and to be introduced to Oliver who was recently released into his new den and enclosure in House 10.
Tim Robinson, our PR manager for Australia and New Zealand, and 18 wonderful supporters from Australia, the UK and Hong Kong have just set off on Animals Asia's China Trek 2010. Click here to read Tim's fantastic blog on their adventures.