It’s that time of year — pumpkin spice has taken control of our lives and we’re prepping to eat ourselves silly with family and friends. For so many of us, this holiday season is tinged with a bit of anxiety about what the future holds. And yet, in between slices of pie and our third helping of vegan stuffing, the staff of HeARTs Speak has some truly amazing things for which we’re thankful.
HeARTs Speak has over 600 artist members who work globally, from Australia, Bolivia and Brazil to Singapore, the U.K. and everywhere in between! This Thanksgiving, these artist members top our list of reasons we feel grateful to know each and every one of them. The diverse community that exists within HeARTs Speak is fostered by each and every member; folks who resolutely fill the world with compassion, creativity, and collaborative spirit every day of the year.
Many of our artist members are professional photographers who donate countless hours to creating portraits of animals awaiting adoption. Others work in traditional mediums to provide shelters and rescues with portraits to incentivize adoption or valuable fundraising fodder. And some members come from backgrounds like graphic design, illustration or writing, and contribute everything from website design to copywriting to marketing collateral. Regardless of the way they contribute, they come from all walks of life to selflessly work for a cause they believe in.
Their dedication impacts well over 32,000 animals every year. They’re exactly like rock stars, only covered in pet hair!
HeARTs Speak also owes a debt of gratitude to animal welfare staff and volunteers, without whom there would be no impact on animals. Not only do they make it possible for our members to successfully offer their time, they also make programs like the Perfect Exposure Project flourish and let’s be real: they provide daily, sometimes around-the-clock, care for the animals that we so adore.
They’re quite literally superheroes who bottle feed kittens with one hand while running playgroups, adoption events, and vaccine clinics with the other.
Our animal shelter and rescue contacts are the peanut butter to our jelly. The Batman to our Gotham. The Ernie to our Bert. Without them, there’s no us. This past year, nearly 250 staff and volunteers in 9 cities across the country came to our Perfect Exposure Project workshops. And together, these secret agents of creativity and change will have the power to impact nearly 100,000 pets who enter their shelters every year.
HeARTs Speak is staffed by a tiny but mighty crew. We are the kind of folks who pride ourselves on the bond we have with animals; who talk to our guinea pigs and laugh with our cats; who spend more of our time working with canine office mates than with each other. But we are nothing without the people who make it all possible: the artists, the organizations, the volunteers and advocates, the adopters…the list goes on.
Grateful doesn’t begin to cover how we feel. But for now, we say “Thank you. You make a difference. You make us HeARTs Speak.” We’re heartened by what we’ve been able to accomplish in 2016 and excited as we turn towards 2017, ready to work together, harness creativity, and spread love.
Happy Thanksgiving, y’all.
Love, Lisa, Caitlin & Hannah