Irene Muschel, a New York based animal rights activist has something important to say. And she has a fantastic way of saying it. She uses large murals that cover the whole building!
Irene started putting up murals to educate the poor about spay/neuter and related animal care (Its interesting to see the contrast for in India pets have abysmal spay/neuter rates as most pet owners don’t even consider that as an option). Of her 2 murals she has put up – the one shown here is in NYC and is on a 10-year contract, the other one is in east Harlem and will be there as long as the landlord owns the building! Irene’s thinks murals are an effective way to reach people. Murals supplement and support the work of sterilization clinics (ABC Centers in India) and rescue projects, provide an attractive educational presence, and do not take time away from hands-on work.
The ABC of Irene’s mural DIY is: She contacted a street painter, walked through the target neighborhoods & found two landlords who were receptive to what she wanted to do. The first landlord charged her a one-time fee of $200, the 2nd donated the space in exchange for Irene painting the outside of his building.
The most gratifying aspect of her mural project has been the gratitude of the callers. Often they are isolated individuals with no awareness of the many local resources available to help animals. In one instance a young paraplegic man in a wheelchair called to say his cat’s ears were turning over. He did not know about ear mites, and had never treated his cat for them. Irene had the necessary ear surgery done and also had the cat spayed.
The Stray Dogs of India wish many more walls to Irene Muschel.
Lessons for India: We have a very high need for ABC education and we have a very high no. of crumbly unpainted walls, mostly taken by either GSM/CDMA providers or ‘marriage bureaus’! Some of them can go to ABC awareness through AWO/ NGO/ volunteers’ efforts. It could go a long way in for the stray dogs of India.