3:30 PM|W|P|Wildlife America|W|P|
The first time I met her I was not sure how she would respond to me. I knew that she had been abused by humans, but I was not sure to what degree and if she had any trust of humans left in her at all.

She had been taken to a veterinary clinic to be euthanized. The owner said she was unmanageable and a trouble maker.

The clinic had called us to ask if we would take her. We had no choice in the matter. How we would fair with Michi would depend a great deal on her, but no matter what her situation was, she would be given a permanent home.

She came to us in the back of a pickup truck. The owner had delivered her to us at the request of the clinic.

She came out of the back of the camper shell, stopped, and stood there looking at me with those deep yellow eyes. Eyes, which looked through you and into your spirit. Eyes that seemed to be able to size you up in a matter of seconds. She sniffed and lifted her head.

I waited looking back at her. She sniffed the air again and took a cautious step forward. I knelt and waited. She took another step forward and came closer. Her nose gently touched my hand and then she licked my hand.

I ran my hand over her face and she came closer to me. Our friendship was tentative to start with and she had to learn to trust me. Once she made that decision, it was permanent.

For almost eight years now, Michi has lived with us. She has joined me in giving many presentations, which have touched many hearts.

Often my heart skips a beat and tears come to my eyes as I think about what would have happened to my dear and beloved friend Michi had we not been able to provide her with a loving home.

I always get this same feeling now over the animals that we have not been able to save because we no longer have enough enclosures. But I will never stop working to create a situation which will make it possible for us to save every animal that may come our way.

Yes, it is often lonely on the front lines, but those of you who are there also, know the meaning of success and the feeling of gratitude for being able to make a real difference.

Thank each of you who have supported our efforts in every way that you have, and those who continue to do so.

And thank you Michi for being here with us and for loving us. No my friends, Michi is not a pet. She is a wolf. And she shall forever be a wolf, yet she has come to accept us as her pack and we have accepted her in the same manner. When her owner bought her, she was a cuddly tiny cub, then she grew up and he became frightened of her. This is so often the case.

Wolves do not belong in houses or enclosures. They belong free. Running wild and feeling the wind blowing in their faces.

But as long as people captive breed wolves and other wild animals for “fun and profit”, then there will always be the need to give them a home where they can live out the rest of their lives.

Through education, we work for the day when we will all understand that the real hope for wolves is restoring their habitat, educating people who have been misinformed and protecting our public lands, which shall forever be home to our wild friends.

|W|P|113175198368988522|W|P|Michi|W|P|windwalker@defendthewolves.org11/11/2005 08:55:00 PM|W|P|Blogger Susan Landes|W|P|Yes, I truly believe that wolves and other wild animals can assess one's soul and intentions instantlly and communicate telepathically.

I have heard many many stories attesting this.

Most recently 2 stories where killer whale groups showed up in great numbers at the at sea ash burial of 2 people who loved and connected with them during their life.

Michi is truly a beautiful animal. I am so glad you found each other.2:57 PM|W|P|Wildlife America|W|P|
Over the last year I have become amazed at the number of foundations who claim to be wildlife and environmental foundations who make grants to everyone other than those who are actually doing the front line work.

I am amazed that the quickest way to be denied funding is simply to be doing hands on frontline work.

If you are an organization, which has no actual dealings with issues other than hiring lobbyists, then you have an excellent chance for funding.

It seems to me that the foundations who are supposedly the largest founders are simply tax shelters looking for the good name yet seeking to do as little to change circumstances as possible.

Why am I surprised? I guess I am simply disappointed to find that the front line efforts of those who are actually doing the work are further hampered by those seeking merely to build a good name for themselves.

I have spoken with several other front line advocates on this subject. It seems they have run into the same situation. So few foundations out there actually want to be involved with people who go into the forests to make change, or rescue and rehab the animals that need it or fight the big corporations to stop pollution. So exactly what “good” is it they are doing with all those millions of dollars in “charitable” contributions? Buying lobbyists, who lobby for laws that get ignored, re-written to have as little impact as possible, or laws that are never to be enforced to start with as well as laws that are enforced in desired areas and ignored in other areas and simply make lobbyists a good living.

So where are the real environmental entrepreneurs? I know there are some, a very few who dedicate their funds to make real change. However, I am surprised to find that people who donate millions of dollars each year have no idea that real and lasting change comes from the frontlines up. Not from the opposite directions.

I have seen so many organizations out there trying to make change without ever having been even one time into the filed. They have developed “Great Ideas” sitting behind a desk without being totally apprised and informed as to what the real problems are. And this is how change will come? And the changes made are often as bad as the problems were to start with. Too little knowledge of the facts compounded by too little dedication needed to go into the field and find the real solutions.

So fellow front line advocates, I now understand why we always see each other in different places on different issues.

I understand the dedication of those who will go even if they have to walk. And these are the “radicals” people speak of when they refer to front liners. Not because they are radicals, but because they are not willing to just sit idly by and do nothing while people who have no real idea of what is happening much less what needs to be done waste away the precious time that we have and tie up the majority of the resources available.

Therefore, as we have done in the past, so shall we do in the future. We shall make the changes that must be made and we will do so despite the floundering of the rich and infamous.

See you front liners out there on the front lines. And I will do as we always do. I will share the warmth of my fire, what food I may have with me, and an extra blanket if someone has the need for one.
|W|P|113174991551177406|W|P|Front Line Advocates Make the Real Difference|W|P|windwalker@defendthewolves.org11/11/2005 08:41:00 PM|W|P|Blogger Susan Landes|W|P|It seems to me that MANY MANY people who do charitable giving would want to know what you are writing of.

Is there any way you can post this info where they will see it?

At the sites that rate non-profits?

Or anywhere else you can think.

I really think educating the charitable givers would help this situation.

Keep up the great work!11/17/2005 11:27:00 PM|W|P|Blogger Susan Landes|W|P|Here's one:

Charity Navigator, America's largest independent charity evaluator, provides free
financial evaluations of America's charities.
www.charitynavigator.org