Animal Welfare Challenges Jordan

Why I DON’T Want You To Sponsor Me to Run A Multi-Day Ultramarathon

When I set out to hike the West Highland Way a lot of people asked me if I was doing it to raise money for charity. The same question came up when I spoke about taking on a triathlon, and now again about Ultra X Jordan. I wasn’t, I’m not and I won’t be. I don’t like the idea of flogging a Just Giving page across social media, guilt-tripping friends and family into donating. That is something I will never do, but this gave me an idea.

What if I could use my next challenge to raise not money but awareness.

When I think about doing anything for charity 2 amazing organizations come to mind. Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project and Empty the Tanks. These charities are not only fighting for defensless animals, they are kept afloat by volunteers who spend their own time and money doing so. This, appose to greedy corporate businessmen who run campaigns for other charities, asking for donations to feed hungry mouths or house the homeless, whilst they take home hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

“A dolphin’s smile is the greatest deception. It creates the illusion that they’re always happy.” – Ric O’Barry

A Sneaky kind of activium

I am not a typical animal rights activist, protesting outside embassies and waving banners outside marine parks just isn’t me. I like to think that most of the human population are good people with compassion and empathy. I like to think that the people who support marine parks do so because they don’t understand how they are supporting such cruelty.

‘The Cove’ in Taiji, Japan. Red with the blood of Dolphins.

A sneaky kind of activism.

I’m sure that most people who take part in ‘swim with dolphins experiences’ would be shocked to hear that the dolphins they swim with have been ripped from the Japanese ocean. That they are then heavily medicated and starved until they are forced to do tricks for food. All before being flown thousands of miles around the globe to live the rest of their lives in concrete tanks. They spend the rest of their lives literally dancing for their dinner, or going hungry.

Dolphin sedation. Moments ago she was wild and free.

The same people would (hopefully) be upset to hear that the dolphins they swim with have pod (family) members who were brutally slaughtered by way of a metal rod speared into the back of their head, having already watched the rest of their family meet the same fate. (If you want to see just how brutal the capture, selection and slaughter process is, check out #thecove on Instagram)

As long as there is a demand for captive animals, the hunters of Taiji, Japan will continue to supply. If there is no demand, the supply has to stop.

The hunters and their blood filled skiff, they call this ‘Tradition’.

By showing the people where the Dolphins in marine parks come from, I hope to evoke some compassion. I hope I can help people convince themselves not to support this cruelty. It’s a sneaky kind of activism!

What does running have to do with dolphins?

Well, nothing and everything! As I train for my next challenge my aim is to share my journey, from non-runner to multi-day ultramarathon runner. I want to share my efforts through social media, whilst also sharing posts from my chosen charities and educational articles. I hope to use the attention I get from taking on a big challenge to bring awareness to the plight of captive animals around the world. In some cases, this being one of them, awareness is as valuable as money. In particular I want to raise awareness of the cruelty behind the ‘fun and games’ of marine parks.

I have more posts coming over the coming weeks about Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project and Empty the Tanks. For now, here are some links to their websites and social media. Please give them a read and a like or follow.

Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project website

Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project Instagram

Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project Facebook page

Empty the Tanks website

Empty the Tanks Instagram

Empty the Tanks Facebook page

The wind and the Sun

The Wind and the Sun were disputing which was the stronger. Suddenly they saw a traveller coming down the road, and the Sun said: “I see a way to decide our dispute. Whichever of us can cause that traveller to take off his cloak shall be regarded as the stronger. You begin.” So the Sun retired behind a cloud, and the Wind began to blow as hard as it could upon the traveller. But the harder he blew the more closely did the traveller wrap his cloak round him, till at last the Wind had to give up in despair. Then the Sun came out and shone in all his glory upon the traveller, who soon found it too hot to walk with his cloak on.

Kindness effects more than severity.

Thanks for reading, you can keep up with my training efforts on Instagram (Kat_Casey_Adventure)

Kat x

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