Scattered throughout the world there are foundations which aggressively support grassroots initiatives as a way to bring communities together, engaging them in a wide range of issues from environmental health to the protection of the Earth’s greenspace, waters and creatures. The Ian Somerhalder Foundation joins in this effort to empower and support people in making a positive difference in their communities and the world.
Stacey has always been an advocate against animal cruelty, so when she read about ISF’s work to collaborate with people and projects to positively impact the planet and its creatures, she decided to join in this effort. She, along with a group of friends who shared the same passions and dedication, formed a coalition to end animal cruelty and abuse.
The Vampire Diaries Conventions soon became a catalyst to bring many people together for Ian and for his foundation ISF. While at a convention, Stacey met Theresa and added her to the group. Theresa’s dedication to the ethical treatment of animals is also shared by her twin daughters. Stacey saw this as an excellent opportunity to bring today’s youth to the group, which ISF believes are the strong voices of our future innovators and changemakers. As the years went by, new members were added. Members were from New York, Florida, Georgia and Tennessee, making this a truly multi-state coalition. Communicating on the group’s Facebook page, Stacey coordinates several donation drives and campaigns a year. During each of the scheduled events, members collectively joined forces within their own states, donating food and supplies as well as their time to animal shelters and rescue groups. News of each upcoming donation drive and campaign is shared by Stacey and each member through social media to encourage everyone, including other groups, to join in the effort.
On a recent donation drive to help animals, Stacey encouraged members to seek out new ways to use their talents helping animals. A Florida member found an excellent opportunity to raise much needed funds for a local shelter by combining her love for running with her love for animals. She took part in a 5K run fundraiser. New York members used their communication skills to secure donations of food and supplies for their local shelters.
Stacey takes advantage of the powerful influence of social media to share the group’s campaign news, hoping to inspire and encourage discontinued groups to become involved again. Thoughts and suggestions for members to stay active and engaged in grassroots initiatives are regularly shared within this close-knit group of friends.
In Stacey words, “Our group simply believes that giving back and helping others is what we should do.” A powerful statement which can reach everyone. Whatever your passion might be, YOU can make a difference one small step at a time.
Written by Judy Paolercio
Edited by Bob Stone
1) Stacey and Judith volunteering at a Shelter event
2) Twin daughters of Theresa, Angela & Theresa at a rescue event
3) April Renee DeVito Chandler with donations for a shelter
ISF depends on your support to continue to provide education and programs in support of Creatures, the Environment and Youth. Please consider donating today.