Tuesday, Jul 07th

LATEST:
You are here: Supplements Weekender Animal Defenders SXM

Best_of_2015_587x57_Results

Animal Defenders SXM

~ Volunteers in the spotlight: Fleur Hermanides ~

For more than three months, a group of wonderful volunteers has taken up the mantle left behind by the passing of Elizabeth and has been feeding the stray dogs. Weekender would like to introduce you to these volunteers as it will hopefully stimulate others to join in the cause. It does not have to be feeding; any way people can help animals is fine. Whatever their expertise or specialty: Fostering and/or helping with administrative duties, an awareness/educational campaign and/or fundraising, it's all for a good cause – the animals.

1. Tell us a bit about yourself, Fleur Hermanides.

I was born in Aruba to Dutch parents but raised here since a baby. I moved away when I was 18 to study biology in the Netherlands; moved back home in November 2010 for a position at the Public Health department as an environment and hygiene policy advisor. Since moving back, I've been involved in many things, especially environmental NGOs and animal NGOs. I've always wanted to be a veterinarian, but I'm not good around blood and animals in pain, so I decided study about my surroundings and animals in a different manner. I am studying biology and love it. I also do with Muay-Thai Kickboxing, Crossfit and soccer (I help manage the female soccer team FC Soualiga) and of course I volunteer for multiple NGOs, socialize with friends and do water sports, hiking, biking, dinners and movie nights.

2. Why did you become a volunteer for the animals?

A very long time ago, as a group of little girls, we collected books and sold them during a yard sale and all proceeds went to the Animal Welfare Foundation. We were so proud of ourselves! Now I can't see all the animals suffering; I decided that, instead of only donating food and money, I would also feed and help out strays, getting them spayed, giving them medical attention if necessary, fostering animals and nursing them back to health and getting them ready to go to their forever home. It feels great watching the animals evolve into great pets and find loving families to call their own.

3. What is your favourite animal?

I pretty much love all animals, but for pets, I definitely am a dog person. I so love fostering little puppies that are so happy to see you come home and cuddle with them. Right now, I have a little puppy that's about five months old. She was totally un-socialized and very scared, and there is already after a week such a dramatic change; it's amazing to see her change on a daily basis. As soon as her skin condition is fully healed, she'll be able to make a family very happy as a loving companion.

4. What's the most gripping story you've ever experienced while helping animals?

Finding dumped dogs by irresponsible pet owners, or people dumping their pregnant pets because they didn't spay their animals but don't want to take care of the consequences; also people maltreating their animals or not tending to their needs, treating them like their possession and not like a living being. And do not even get me started on people using their animals for fighting/gambling purposes or just using them as guard animals and not giving them the love and care they need.

I am, however, happy to see that there are many amazing people out there helping out the cause. We have so many great NGOs with great people behind them. Seemingly, the situation on Sint Maarten is slowly but surely getting better, due to the help of great people like the recently deceased Elisabeth Reitz, Animal Welfare Foundation and more recently SXM Paws, Animal Defenders and Team Golden Dog.

5. What would you like to see changed for animals on St. Maarten?

I would hope people here would take better care of their animals, treat them better, give them the shelter, food and hydration they need, and love them like they deserve. Also realize how important it is to spay your animal. You can get great deals through Animal Welfare Foundation. And even if an animal lives on the streets, treat it with respect, don't think knocking an animal down on the streets is nothing; it shows you have no respect for life.

6. How best could that change be achieved?

I think with all the great work the NGOs and volunteers are doing, we are on the right path. But more awareness and knowledge is necessary to achieve all that is necessary. Slowly but surely, we will get there.

7. What would you say about getting more people involved in volunteering for the animals?

There is nothing more gratifying than volunteering for anything you love, whether it's kids, the environment or animals. Watching those happy tails wag and feeling those wet kisses they give you when you make them happy and loved; and watching them become healthier, happier animals just make you feel like you've done something really great. It makes you sleep just that little bit better at night.

Also, please adopt, don't shop! Mixed dogs are known to have a better immune system and don't have predispositions to any genetic problems that occur a lot with breed dogs. Spaying and neutering your pet is so very important; without it, we will never be able to curb our (stray) animal overpopulation. I am adding a picture with puppy Sol and myself; she was adopted in Maryland and is doing amazingly. We found her and her seven siblings on the dump with her mom, but she was the runt of the litter so needed some extra special attention.

Image
St. Maarten midday Weather Forecast for Saturday
Saturday, 17 October 2015
DATE ISSUED: Saturday, October 17, 2015 @ 12:00 LST (16:00 UTC) VALID UNTIL: Sunday midday (12:00... Read more...
Image
SHTA poll: Businesses want anti-ship-jumping legislation
Saturday, 17 October 2015
Click here for SHTA graph pdf PHILIPSBURG--The St. Maarten Hospitality and Trade Association... Read more...
Image
Dominica’s tourism sector ready to welcome visitors after TS Erika
Friday, 16 October 2015
ROSEAU, Dominica--“Dominica is open for business and ready to welcome visitors to its shores.”... Read more...
Image
Reparations Committee: Withdraw Queens’ names from Suriname’s highest mountains
Thursday, 15 October 2015
PARAMARIBO--Suriname’s National Reparations Committee NRCS has filed a request with President... Read more...
Image
Ex-US House Speaker Hastert to plead guilty in hush-money case
Friday, 16 October 2015
CHICAGO--Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert is expected to plead guilty in a hush-money case... Read more...
Image
Hillary Clinton to 'look hard' at Julian Castro as possible VP pick
Friday, 16 October 2015
WASHINGTON--Democratic presidential contender Hillary Clinton won the backing of Housing and Urban... Read more...
Image
Half a million Yemen children face severe malnutrition
Friday, 16 October 2015
GENEVA--More than half a million children in Yemen face life-threatening malnutrition as a risk of... Read more...
Image
Modi to open 70-year-old files in challenge to Gandhi dynasty
Friday, 16 October 2015
NEW DELHI--Prime Minister Narendra Modi says he will seek to unravel one of India's most enduring... Read more...
Image
Cuba in cash crunch due to low commodity prices, Venezuela woes
Friday, 16 October 2015
HAVANA--Low commodity prices, a drought at home and Venezuela's economic crisis have created a cash... Read more...
Image
Apple's newest courtroom foe is patent-savvy university
Friday, 16 October 2015
NEW YORK--As a veteran of the global smart phone wars, Apple is used to courtroom battles with... Read more...
Image
Focus needs to be on fighting crime & helping unemployed
Friday, 16 October 2015
Dear Editor, With all of the political situation on the island, we can't lose focus on some of the... Read more...
Image
Had enough
Friday, 16 October 2015
Dear Queenie, My brother died years ago but his widow stayed close to our family. Eventually she... Read more...
Image
RBC St. Maarten Little League School Tournament
Saturday, 17 October 2015
Sister Marie Laurence defeated Leonald Conner in the RBC St. Maarten Little League School... Read more...
Image
Nadal trounces Wawrinka, Djokovic tames Tomic
Friday, 16 October 2015
CHINA-- Former world number one Rafa Nadal displayed more signs of a return to top form with a... Read more...
Image
Junk shop photo spurs quest to confirm Billy the Kid image
Friday, 16 October 2015
DENVER--For the $2 he spent to buy three old photographs, Randy Guijarro may have hit the mother... Read more...
Image
Few signs of improvement for NBA star Odom after collapse
Friday, 16 October 2015
LAS VEGAS--Pro basketball and reality TV star Lamar Odom spent a third day hospitalized on... Read more...
Image
Bruney cruises into retirement
Friday, 16 October 2015
~ After three decade in cruise industry ~   By Alita Singh   Frank Bruney has seen tiny... Read more...
Image
ALL HANDS ON DECK, WE MADE IT!
Friday, 16 October 2015
~ Fair Transport Sailing Vessel Nordlys is launched ~   St. Maarten has been graced by the... Read more...
Editorial - Anybody’s guess
Saturday, 17 October 2015
Governor Eugene Holiday has decided to seek legal clarity on the current constitutional impasse.... Read more...
Editorial - Time is up
Friday, 16 October 2015
With so much ongoing constitutional turmoil, the fact that more than 100 people attended the... Read more...
Image
Saturday Oct. 17, 2015
Friday, 16 October 2015
Image
Friday Oct. 16, 2015
Friday, 16 October 2015
Notices October 16
Friday, 16 October 2015
General Meeting St. Maarten Professional Softball Association (SMPSA) general meeting for the... Read more...
Notices October 15
Thursday, 15 October 2015
General Meeting S.M.P.S.A. general meeting for the softball season 2016 will be held at Sundial... Read more...