Tracy Holmes photo Rescued Siberian husky Beau shows his excitement while posing for a photo with students Alijah Sigmund (left) and Francis Lee-Meyer.

South Surrey students set sights on husky-rescue group

Burnaby organization that rescues Siberian huskies from high-kill shelters to benefit

A pair of Semiahmoo Secondary students have taken a dogged approach to a year-end assignment – and Francis Lee-Meyer and Alijah Sigmund hope the end result of their effort will be better lives for rescued Siberian huskies.

The teens, in Grade 11, launched a GoFundMe campaign this month in response to the challenge posed by their social-justice teacher.

As of Monday (April 22), $360 had been raised for Danielle’s husky’s to the Rescue. The teens have their sights set on raising at least $1,000.

“She rescues huskies from high-kill shelters in California,” Lee-Meyer said last week, of Burnaby resident Danielle Callaghan.

“She spends all her money to helping them.”

The teens were inspired to help the rescue organization after learning about the dogs through Amanda Ghilarducci, a learning support assistant at Semi who adopted her husky, Beau, from Danielle’s, and has often shared photos and updates about the two-year-old dog with the students.

“They feel like they know him,” Ghilarducci said.

“My phone is full of photos and I talk to them about him all the time.”

Ghilarducci said she “fell in love with the breed” about five years ago, after rescuing her first husky, Breeze, from the SPCA. She learned about Callaghan’s organization while searching for a ‘sibling’ for Breeze.

READ MORE: 22,000 abused, abandoned animals rescued by the BC SPCA in 2018

While she and her husband had to forego that quest after discovering past abuse had rendered Breeze’s temperament incompatible with other dogs, Ghilarducci returned to Callaghan’s organization after Breeze developed a mass in her heart and had to be euthanized.

“Our house was so empty without a dog,” Ghilarducci said.

They’ve had Beau for about six months now.

Lee-Meyer is no stranger to having a dog – his family owns a year-old Rottweiler-blue heeler cross. Ollie is “helping me get off my screen more,” Lee-Meyer said.

Both he and Sigmund share a love for dogs and want to do what they can to benefit animal rights and quash animal cruelty.

“They’re living beings, they have emotions and they feel pain, the same way we do, (and) they should be treated the same way,” Lee-Meyer said.

“I think of dogs as like humans,” Sigmund said, adding it’s “not right” to put them in high-kill shelters.

In addition to funds, Sigmund and Lee-Meyer are collecting dog toys, treats, collars and other items for the rescue organization.

Ghilarducci said word of the students’ quest brought tears to Callaghan’s eyes. Lee-Meyer and Sigmund said they are considering other events that could bolster the campaign, which is continuing until about mid-June.



tholmes@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

City of White Rock hosts official pier reopening

Event included ribbon-cutting, speeches, live music

Surrey school district to allow students to miss class for global climate strike

Students must be excused from school by parents; will be able to make up missed work without penalty

Surrey rallies for change in global climate strike

Holland Park event part of marches around the world Sept. 20

Surrey RCMP need help to find missing man

Denis Godard, 64, who was reported missing on Sept. 19

Little library stolen in Clayton Heights

Thieves permanently check out family’s book collection

VIDEO: Grizzly bears fight along northern B.C. highway in rare footage

Cari McGillivray posted the head-turning video, shot near Stewart, B.C., to social media

Handgun crackdown, health spending and transit plans latest campaign promises

Friday was the end of a busy week on the campaign trail

B.C. woman photographs massive ant swarm on Abbotsford driveway

She asked what the ants were doing? The answer: war

Iconic 90s TV show ‘Friends’ celebrates 25th anniversary

The iconic, decade-long television show aired its first episode 25 years ago today

Westbound crash on Highway 1 in Langley causing extreme traffic delays

Collision occured just after Glover Road, cars backed up all the way to 264th Street

Police arrest B.C. phone scammer linked to illegal call centres in India

Person arrested in Burnaby here on a work visa, says police

Air Canada forced girl, 12, to remove hijab: civil rights group

The San Francisco Bay Area office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations calling for change

Man from Winnipeg who was hiking alone found dead in Banff National Park

RCMP say the man was hiking alone on Mount Temple Thursday

Most Read

l -->