It’s sad listening to the humanitarian aid needed by the citizens of Puerto Rico. It’s equally as sad to learn about the cats and dogs abandoned after the devastation of Hurricane Maria. Not to get caught up in the political implications of the U.S. government’s efforts [or lack thereof], there is an initiative underway by one pretty fantastic rescue group that attends to animals.
Similar to the efforts of the Humane Society of the United States, and the Pilots N Paws® programs, the Guardians of Rescue is a registered 501(c)3, non-profit whose members work tirelessly to protect the well-being of all animals, particularly those who are distressed.
Badass ‘Guardians’ fighting for the helpless . . .
The Long Island-based group is supported by folks from all walks of life. Their numbers include ex-military personnel, retired police detectives, carpenters, electricians and even former convicts among their unpaid volunteer ranks.
Robert Misseri founded the group in 2010 to help with the cases that fall through the cracks with the animal cruelty laws. Today, it’s valiant accomplishments are the focus of a six-episode TV show, which aired on Animal Planet, aptly titled: “The Guardians.”
Guardians of Hurricanes . . .
Upon learning about the devastation caused by the Category 4 storm, they formed a plan.
“Hurricane Maria, [Puerto Rico's] second hurricane this season was catastrophic and completely devastated the island,” said Misseri. “There are animals that are suffering, as they have no food or water and no medical care. We will do our best to help as many as we possibly can.”
To start triage, the group utilized the volunteers they had on the ground in the country to locate and help pets with immediate need. But the group didn’t stop there. On Oct. 2, they charted a plane from Florida (fully funded by The Onyx & Breezy Foundation) and loaded it with supplies the pets of Puerto Rico desperately needed.
They chose a parachute plane to make the trip, knowing they would have special cargo on the way back. Rescuers accompanied those goods to the country and then spent the following days saving over 60 pets, so they could all be flown back to the United States for care.
“The destruction that Puerto Rico is experiencing is beyond belief,” adds Misseri. “We know there are plenty of groups helping the people, so we are happy to help our four-legged friends the best we can. But we can only do it with the help of those who support our organization, they are the ones that by making donations that truly help make this happen and save lives.”
The plane, packed with these needy animals, returned to Florida on Oct. 5. The cats and dogs didn’t have to wait long to begin their path to recovery. Guardians of Rescue had veterinarians on call for the arrival to immediately access and treat the animals.
Now the dozens of canines and felines saved by this group will have a second chance at finding their forever homes. Efforts like this are heartwarming as they rise above petty governmental in-fighting to show what true humanitarian efforts can truly accomplish.
Primary Source: Guardians of Rescue