I love running, I love finding money, I love parrots. Before finding Parrot Outreach Society accidentally, I had no idea that exotic birds were in need of rescuing. I foolishly assumed that because parrots were beautiful, intelligent and expensive to buy that they wouldn't be given up and if they were, people would be clammoring to take them in as pets. I was very, very wrong.
When stopping at the strip mall where the Outreach is located, I saw the sign and thought, "Interesting! I would like to volunteer. Maybe they need cleaning help?" I never dreamed that I could actually be more helpful to the Parrot Outreach than to be an A#1 poop cleaner (my specialty despite a college degree). Pam needed help cleaning, I slowly and gently worked into helping in many other ways as well as adopting a bird of my own. I'm now the Parrot Outreach Volunteer Coordinator! I digress.
The parrots at the Parrot Outreach are almost all domestically bred (except for the old ones), intelligent, beautiful and always in need of socialization. I'm tearing up writing this, these birds need humans and need homes. The best I can do is give them some part time love. Pam, the Outreach founder and director, has created a place where these rescued birds can live and be loved until someone can take them on as a new family member. Many of the parrots live longer than 50 years, they will have seven homes on average. They will go through the process of being rescued or having new homes so many times in their lives. Pam has created a safe, clean place for the birds to socialize with humans and get new homes. Cleaning has a downside, metal cages rust, welds come undone, trays become ruined with repeated cleaning. The birds need new, cleanable, presentable cages. As with any 501c3, there's a lot of need and not enough money.
I cleaned and cleaned the cages on Tuesday and Thursdays for months. I broke the news to my husband that I was doing Vol State again. I had to start training. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I'd run to the birds and home. During my runs, I'd find money. All at once it hit me, Pennies for Parrots. I could make an incredibly selfish venture much less selfish by running Vol State with a purpose. We decided to raise money to buy new bird cages. We are running a fundrazr campaign Pennies for Parrots. I decided, if nothing else, I could collect pennies during my runs for the birds. To date, we've raised $1000 toward our $5000 goal! No matter what happens from here on out, I'm thrilled to have been a part of helping the birds in this way.
Today, Wednesday, July 10th, I'll be on a bus to Union City , TN. I will try to post to the blog daily.