There is a proven direct correlation between compassion for animals and compassion for other people. In fact, research shows that every serial killer mistreated animals as a child.
It has always been part of the mission of Big Cat Rescue to teach children compassion through educating them about the issues big cats face both in captivity and in the wild. Taking this a step further now, we have come up with a way for students not only to learn, but also to act in a meaningful way to stop mistreatment of big cats in captivity and avoid extinction in the wild.
The Big Cat Public Safety Act ends the abusive cub petting and phases out private ownership of big cats in inhumane tiny cages in backyards. In doing so, it not only stops the mistreatment. As confirmed by the State Department, it increases our ability to enlist other nations to join us in protecting the tiger in the wild.
With the help of volunteers who are professional teachers, we have developed lesson plans by age group. The students would learn about the issues in an appealing, fun way. Then, the students would have the opportunity to actually put that knowledge, and their creativity, to proactive use by writing a letter in support of the bill to Senator Capito, who is a senior member of the Environment and Public Works Committee that the Big Cat Public Safety Act is assigned to.
We are also providing incentives to the class to get involved in the project. Our volunteer teacher Lisa Spencer-Novak has written a short, illustrated book showing the “before” and “after” experience of some of the big cats at Big Cat Rescue. If 50% of the class send letters to the Senator, we will send the class a copy of the book signed by the author and by me. Also, for the first 10 teachers to take on the project, we will donate an Oculus Go headset and instruct the teacher on how to view Big Cat Rescue’s virtual reality videos and have students view them.
We are hoping you can help us find teachers, or others who work with groups of kids, at any level from preschool through high school. If you know of any, it would be a huge help to us in getting this pilot program off the ground if you would send their name and email to KidsforCats@bigcatrescue.org. We will follow up with more details about the program.
On behalf of the cats, thanks VERY much!
Big Cat Rescue