Mail från Dana, oktober 2007

Dearest Liselotte, Thank you so much for writting...I was wondering often how are you...but you told me you are in vacation,that's way i didn't wrote you directly. Thank you for reading our news! When the Adoption Center will be opened,I hope you'll be able to come ,I am going to invite my few "international" the opening event...the bad news is that I don't know exactly when thsi will happen.

The fact is that Mittal is paying for all the building supplies and they are also "responsable" for workers....because it's volunteer work,when they have no other commitments "for profit"...they are coming to work at the shelter'building...that's way things move SOOOOO slowly.

if you'd like to take a look at the pictures: So far they dig for water,add concrete floor to 10 from the 12 paddocks,fenced all the 15,000 sq m,the bureaucracy is killing us!!!! I run every day with loads and loads of papers for authorisations,permits,...everything takes time that is adding up to already slow movement...but I am commited to do this ,no matter how hard it is.

I am happy that there is some balance in your life....and thanks to you and BAC ,ROLDA is surviving monthly.

No matter what people believed when reading the first press release I 've wrote about MITTAL...which I had to write,because it was a positive thing...especially taking into account the history of MITTAL reff. the,no matter what most of people think,ROLDA is same poor on money,because MITTAL didn't make donations...they are just helping with building....all the costs related with the "old" shelter,medicines,vets,staff,...are our responsability...and you are right,more and more is adding up on my shoulders...

I tried everything,I wrote appeals in local media to convince people to volunteer...nobody commit itself,everyone "loves" but at distance...I cannot rely on volunteers.I am tired.

As I start saying,thanks to BAC 'donations,we were able to pay the last months bills....I hope to be able to buy radiators for winter for kennels.

Beside BAC donations,only Veronica from UK sent few pounds last month and in USA -Merritt almost anythingin April-March he received a small grant. Nothing else,the whole year.

We need around 2,000-2,500 E/monthly for the "old" shelter..but the costs can be reduced to 1,800 E once we'll open the second ,bigger which case we would need 2,500 E just for the medicines/sterilizations,at least for the 6 starting months.

We made also list with veterinary equipment needed for the clinic,this is around 50,000 USD -all the equipment.

It will be my pleasure to help you with BAC'website.The only problem is that I know to work basic things:html editor.

Answers to your questions follows:
1. What is the progress for the Mittal animal center project - is there any grand opening planned...?

Hopefully the Adoption Center will be opened at the end of this year,December month.
I plan an opening session,where to invite our few international longtime friends,I know it will be good to see each other in good circumstances for the animals. Some media contacts will be also invited,among them the BBC reporter that just visited and helped at ROLDA as volunteer(in sept.2007)
I had a brief discussion with some MITTAL people,they would like to invite some national media,too.

2. How may animals will it host?

ROLDA is impressed that MITTAL changed radically their way of dealing with homeless animals problem,a problem that indeed might have occassionally a negative impact on the MITTAL employees(since the begining of 2007,there were reported more biting cases than "real" work accident within MITTAL)

Strays problem -from the hygienic point of view represent also a threat,because Romanian authorities,too busy with corruption and washing black money don't care to vaccinate at least against rabies the dogs,the danger caused by their inconscience is doubled by the "dissappearing " of public funds...while animals don't have food in the pounds,no animal is vaccinated or treated ever by authorities.Just killed in silence.

The Adoption Center built with help offered by MITTAL and their associates will accomodate 500 dogs.The veterinary clinic functioning in the Adoption Center will offer social services for the local community:free spay/neuter ,low cost veterinary services for poor people.
An animal ambulance service will be also started ,to help people transport safely their furry friends to the clinic.

3. Will this project solve your "medical" problem, to have medical personnel work with you in the animal care?

The former veterinary ROLDA worked with choose to be a bad choice(elegantly speaking)...our new vet is very good ,qualified,with experience,fluent in English.the problem is that he is recognized in Galati and Braila towns and he is very solicited.
He is always in the middle,serving his clients and doing work for ROLDA,he is offering us discounts to spay/neuter(almost half of the price any vet offered us so far)...but he can do that,.because he gagne very good from his clients that he cannot afford to loose.
Always plus and ,reff. your questions,it would be good /it would be less costly for us to have our own medical staff dealing with routine spay/neuter,treatments...and pay them with a normal salary.

4. How many great donors do you have today? Are you still having trouble each month finding funds for your expenses, or has this improved so that you can concentrate on the spending of money instead?

Unfortunately,I already answer to this question.I am sorry I don't have a better answer.
In the passing weekend ,I contacted all veterinary companies I found on internet with appeals for medicines and vet supplies.Let's see what's happening.
INTERVET UK donated many doses of spot-on products for external deparasitation in the spring ,we were able than to help local community offering free these vials to those helping the strays.
I have many "old" friends,still keeping in touch since more than 6 years,some of them have finacial difficulties,but are with the heart in the right place.
Some are still donating 20 USD or so occassioanlly.Every little bit helps.i already told you the needed costs to survive monthly.I put from my own pocket last year 30,000 E and the accountability is available for everyone to check.
Unfortunately,this year I am not in the position to do the same.
I have a tourist agency that might go well,if i would ever have enough time for an extra far,hours are not enough for ROLDA exclusively....all daily problems,appeals,requests,...

5. What about the dogs at the ROLDA shelter - how are they? Are the same dogs that I met at my visit still with you, or are some adopted..?

I don't remember which dogs you've seen last year.Some were adopted.Bobitza for instance ,after two failing adoptions,he is still with me...
I hope to be able to move them in the new center-when I will have enough funds to renovate the kennels(roof broken,wood chewed,new locks....)..than ,this "old" shelter to be a good home for un-adoptable dogs ,that always deserve a second chance in life.

6. Have they improved well from illness?

It's miraculous how almost all dogs coming with SEVERE HEALTH PROBLEMS ,with 5-10% chances or less to be again healthy...recovered at our shelter.We had temporarely paralysed dogs that recovered in few weeks....Even vets are surprised by dogs ability to fight the illness if they are well treated.
Ussually,strays are strong creatures,sometimes stronger than pets...and it's like in humans case,when a sick dog receive a clean environment,good food and above anything else,love and care...realize that he /she has a reason to fight for its life.
Because ussually in Romania ,there are only two vaccines done to puppies(and the third -antirabies)...puppies are not protected against the most common fatal viruses ...we have a problem with surviving rate of abandonned puppies,due to the fact most of them are abandonned at a very small age and immune system is very poor.Plus all sorts the infections common all over ,at everystep-because the authorities never tried to control such situations,by preventing.

7. Are you often forced to deny new dogs a place, due to lack of place?

I ussually explain people that ROLDA shelter was built innitially as a home for temporarely care but because we now welcomed older dogs and dogs with handicaps,with no chance to survive on the streets...we made some compromises.
The problem is huge.There are appeals all the time,the phone is ringing almost the whole day,appeals coming late in the night or extremly early in the morning....I try to face all this teh best possible(and I am reffering to myself because we have only one van that I ussually drive,so I cannot be in more places at once taking/delivering dogs)

8. And what about you Dana - do you get the chance to ever rest, or are the shelters taking all your awake time..?

I didn't had a vacation since many years,I don't go out with my friends(I think they alreday forgot about me , I think sometimes that I am obssesed to succed in this life to change something for these animals.My mind works constantly to change /inovate things that will help ROLDA and animals in the long approach in education campaign,new things to convince people...
I didn't rest since we started the "old" shelter'building....and it's not because I cannot "escape" for few hours from the crazy world I created around me....but the strange thing is that I would never feel more complete and happy ,except doing what I am doing now.
I am proud to know that your supporters want to hear about our work and Romanian animals,this happens because you spoke so nicely ,I will always treasure the time spent with you here(I laugh sometimes when I remember what nightmare did Boss to you).I will always treasure your sincere friendship!
With much love and friendship,
ps.Please let me know if I should write more/something else/something different for your readers.The last donation came for Sept., Thank you so much!