Our town has an on-line bulletin board called, “Maplewood On Line.” It has calendars of upcoming activities, advertisements and a discussion forum with hundreds of conversations going on at once. I used to check it regularly, but unfortunately, it often gets quite negative and turns into a complaining forum and I dislike all of the negativity so I don’t read it as often as I used to. I very rarely respond to a discussion, but will chime in once in awhile if a question is asked about something positive going on or for recommendations for places in town.
Yesterday, a local pet rescue start up, Furry Hearts Rescue, posted that they were looking for a photographer to volunteer their time to take photos of their animals for their Petfinder page. The message was simple,
Are you a photographer, or know anyone who is? We are looking for someone with photography skills and their own quality camera to volunteer for Maplewood’s new Furry Hearts Rescue. We are setting up our Petfinder page, and need photos of our wonderful adoptable animals! Great opportunity to add a 501(c)(3) organization to your resume, and animal photos to your portfolio!
As I followed this post on the message board, I began to get angry. Some people were commenting negatively about their request for someone to donate their time. I could not understand why it should bother a person if someone wanted to help out another person for free, expecting nothing in return. This rescue is entirely run by local volunteers, and all of their funding comes from donations. Those donation goes entirely towards neutering and spaying, vaccinations, checkups etc. and materials like blankets, food bowls, toys, etc. No one is profiting from this other than the animals.
People were writing that volunteers, (like me) are “devaluing the profession.” I finally had to “speak up’ and responded to the thread writing,
I am not sure why, if someone wants to donate their time, this should be stirring up so much negativity. If someone is asking for help and you are able to offer that help, and have the time to do it, why wouldn’t you. It makes me sad to think that people wouldn’t. The point is not to pay back kindness, but to pass it on. That is why I offered to do the photos for Furry Hearts Rescue. I expect nothing in return.
While the thread still remained negative, it started to draw out more positive comments as well – which sadly were ridiculed by more negativity and I appreciate all of the positive comments scattered in among the negative ones. Another person has even offered his time to take more photos and I thank him for that.
I never understand why people have to be so negative. Honestly, it is the old mantra, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Why did these people even feel the need to comment on this thread. It was started out as something that could be so positive. If you don’t want to be a part of it, stay out of it.
In the end, if this thread has done nothing else, it has spread the word and made people aware of this new rescue organization and the needs of all rescue organizations and that is a good thing.
Tagged: devaluing profession, Emmy Lou, Furry hearts rescue maplewood, MOL, Mpalewood on line, pet finder, petfinder, power outage, Rescue dog, the big storm