Over the years the example three women gave me modeled my life. Since when I was a little girl I admired Brigitte Bardot for her love for animals and grew up dreaming to be like her.
At 20 years old I met my second idol, a beautifully sophisticated and lovely lady called, Dolly, who had an animal refuge in her magnificent mansion in front of the ocean. Although she saw me as the legacy for her animal rescue; unfortunately, I was still too young to spend the rest of my life in the farm she was planning to move to. After 2 years of completely devoting my life to rescuing, saving, healing, and taking care of animals I moved back to the city.
I was hired as a public relations representative in a very well known fish plant. However, what I did not know at the time was that outside the doors of the gigantic building where I worked another cruel reality awaiting for me.
The freezing plant had 600 underpaid workers, constant ammoniac leaks, ambulances coming in and out every day, and dozens of mistreated cats getting electrocuted by evil minds. Luckily for these feral cats, and for my agonizing heart, among the many people working in that gigantic enterprise were also the animal lovers, the veterinaries. Thanks to them I could complete one of the best missions of my life, spay and neuter all the cats in the plant. During three years during weekends and late nights, these wonderful beings put animals first before money and prestige. Although the fact that these veterinarians had young families waiting for them at home and that the plants' salaries were not the highest, their passion and commitment to the profession they had chosen came before anything else. The example they gave me has remained engraved on my heart forever. It constantly kindles my enthusiasm during the hard and sometimes unfair battles to save animals from abuse and neglect.
Therefore, after many years I moved to Quebec City where my mission continued in a different setting. Although the country were I was born, Uruguay, is like Texas, a meat producer and exporter; ironically, it was in Quebec where I started my fight to protect farm animals and the horses used in tourism industry. This new experience taught me that when people have to survive with little income during freezing winters, farm animals and pets are in general extremely neglected.
The horse-drawn carriage industry in Quebec City and Montreal had a devastating effect on me. How can it be that the suffering of an animal is considered romantic to some? I asked myself for fifteen years each time I saw them pass in front of me. Every day I saw these poor animals coming from very far away stables to put another 12 hours of walking on cemented roads under 32 degrees celsius and 99 % humidity. Every day I saw them going up and down hills with their heads collapsing down from exhaustion as they carried on among the smoke and noise of tourist buses and cars. Nevertheless, the city inspectors could not do anything about it because from the street level, it was impossible to get a good photograph for proof. The police needed proof for these acts of maltreatment committed by drivers like that they could request an update on very old bylaws.
Therefore, because the only way to get a good shot from inside the carriage was from above, I rented an apartment on an upper level where the carriages passed every day. Finally, I got a great shot! The picture and story of drivers carrying more than 4 adult at a time got published and a group protecting the horses' rights has taken over for me. My mission was accomplished and I was free to come to Sooke. My heart still bleeds today with this memory.
It was in BC, in 1998, where I met my third idol, Treinjia Horn, the Nana Foundation's first lady. Thanks to her unconditional love and devotion to animals I have been able to help many animals in our community. She is a real angel; her heart knows no greed neither a need for control. She always puts animals first. Without her help I would not have accomplished as much as I did and I would not be where I am today in regards to helping animals. I would not have been able to help Brew, Deene, Missy, and many other families. Nowadays, I dream and aspire to one day be like some of these admirable ladies who achieved to make a positive change in the lives of animals.
I have been rescuing feral cats since I was 12 years old in the Priaries. All the cats that I have owned have been feral and strays. I love all kinds of animals and the ones under my care have lived long happy lives.
When I grew up I always had cats and dogs that my mom had rescued; she was also an animal advocate.
Since I moved to the island I first starting rescuing cats in Nanoose Bay practicing the same program used by Safars, the Trap/Neuter/Release Program. After being In Victoria for many years now, I fell the need to join a group dedicated to saving animals. A year ago, I was introduced to the real cat trappers in Sooke, the ones who dedicate their lives to work in muddy fields to undo human cruelty.
At that point, I knew that the Sooke Animal Food & Rescue Society was my group and I started volunteering with them. After fullfilling the society's requirement of having to volunteer for a year before becoming a board member, I am now a proud volunteer board director.
Everyting we do in the society such as: picking up and delivering pet food to dog ownerss in need, working with homeless dogs downtown Victoria, feeding far away cat colonies, taming scared pets, and rescuing animals is an honor to me. I am able to change an animal's life and feel blessed for being a kind human being.
One of the cats my family has now was rescued from the old Sooke Disposal's landfield.
I was ecstatic when I was asked to be a part of SAFARS’ board. I have been a long-time volunteer for the organization and have seen firsthand, the amazing help, heart and happiness the society provides to others. Owning dogs my whole life has been an immeasurable gift to myself, family and friends.
The two current loves of my life Katy and Kona, are a mother and daughter Akita, Rottweiler, Lab mix. My boyfriend had Kona’s mother growing up and now Kona has had Katy. We are so blessed to have three generations of the same dog.
My family has a strong believe in helping animals. Growing up we had numbers of injured pets come to our door and my mother would take each one and make sure they were healthy and had a good home by the time they left. I believe animals can sense kindness and my mother never turned them away or let them down.
My father had been a politician for 3 terms and has had those same believes when it came to running his constituency. If someone came to him he would never turn them away or let them down. I have never walked away from an injured animal and neither do the people I surround myself with.
My boyfriend passed by a deer that had been hit by a car several months ago. He called the police and then sat with the deer until they could get there. He could not stand the thought of the deer being by itself while dying on the side of the road.
I have strong believes, great connections with the community, a political background and can make things happen! “Never turn them away or let them down”. That is my motto and will live by it for this charity.
As the daughter of this charity’s founder, I would like to personally welcome you to our website and thank you for taking a moment to read about our foundation.
I have been fortunate to have a mentor who has positively influenced me to assist those in need. Throughout my childhood, I watched in awe as my mother passionately raised awareness about the horse-drawn carriage industry, domestic animal abuse and farm animal maltreatment.
I clearly remember the day, at a mere 15 years of age, when I embarked on my own journey into speaking up for animals. It was my very first week in a new high school and our former Governor General of Canada, Michaelle Jean, was offering a question and answer opportunity. I can still feel the reluctance and excitement of reciting the speech that my mother had prepared for me in regards to Canada’s farm animals’ rights. The response I had received was more than inadequate and it was then when I decided that someone should have the best interest of animals in our country.
Since then I have spent my time studying Biology in pursuit of a veterinary degree, attending animal rights’ protests, spreading the word about the benefits of a vegetarian and vegan lifestyle; volunteering for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA-Victoria Branch), the Saseenos veterinary clinic, and many other organizations.
After many years of learning useful skills through my education and community leadership experience, I would like nothing more than to bring to life the vision of SAFARS. We live in a beautiful country with more than enough resources to put an end to the neglect of the animals living around us.
I look forward to meeting you and having you make a difference for animals!
Lori is the mother of our dear whisperer, Alissa. she got involved with our society almost from the start when we were refurbishing the barn. Her devotion as a mother who wants to teach her daughter compassion and to make a difference in this world is remarkable. The love for animals both of her daughters' express is thanks to Lori and her husband's magificent education. When the girls were young they visited several wild animal rehabilitation centers and sanctuaries in during their travels.
Lori's personal bio coming soon...