New features

New features

Cruelty Free International urges swift government action to protect animals after Brexit

Cruelty Free International works tirelessly to end animal experiments and cruelty worldwide.

With the UK due to leave the EU at the end of this month, one campaign it is currently backing, alongside 40 animal organisations, is #BetterDealForAnimals, which calls on the government to urgently incorporate recognition of animal sentience into law.

Under EU law, the UK has to abide by Article 13 of the Treaty of Lisbon, which obliges full regard to be paid to the sentience of animals when developing and implementing public policy. With Brexit however, this will be lost from UK law.

Following a petition back in March that urged the government to ensure animal sentience continued to be recognised after Brexit, it stated that it was committed to making any necessary changes required to UK law to ensure this was the case when the UK leaves the EU. However, so far it has been slow to act, and without this, after 31 October animals will no longer be legally recognised as sentient beings with no legal requirement for government to pay regard to their needs when formulating and implementing policy.

Cruelty Free International believes that it is essential that government act as soon as possible so that the country does not leave the EU without sentience being part of UK legislation. That legislation should set out the process for how all government departments will assess and report on animal sentience, and how they will handle any associated animal welfare duties in all policy areas covered.

It should also include a power to establish an Animal Welfare Advisory Commission to support government – including individual departments and public bodies – in discharging its duty to animals, providing independent and transparent advice.

Cruelty Free International is asking supporters to encourage their MPs to urge the government to act now.

It’s an important campaign, and, with no government or lottery funding, the charity relies entirely on donations to continue its work. One way it honours its supporters is with its Book of Remembrance: a tribute to those who have left it a gift in their Will.  You can view it here.

read more
Julie PentecostCruelty Free International urges swift government action to protect animals after Brexit

‘Loved ones’ doesn’t just mean families and friends.

‘Loved ones’ is such an all-encompassing description – friends, family and partners of course, but what about those we loved whose posters were on our walls as teenagers? The pop star pin ups of our teenage years? What happens to the love and affection we feel when they pass away? The British Liver Trust’s online Book of Memories has a new tribute page to one such pin up boy, the wonderful David Cassidy, who sadly passed away in 2017 and bravely shared his story before he passed.  

Davis Cassidy
David Cassidy by Allan Warren [Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0]

David had 10 albums with the Partridge Family and five as a solo artist and was definitely in the category of ‘poster boy’ – although he said he longed to be a rock n roller like Mick Jagger. From ‘Daydreamer’ in 1972 to Blood Brothers in the West End and his Vegas shows in the 1990’s, David continued to break hearts and fill venues with his soulful voice. In 2017 after a performance in which he was clearly struggling, David said he was living with dementia, but in an interview later that year he felt able to share the news that he had liver disease due to alcohol addiction. We are grateful to David and his family for sharing the cause of his illness and death, as many people struggle with alcohol and are afraid to speak about it as they feel they will be judged harshly. Only by being more open will we be able to make changes and support those who need it.

David’s Tribute page was set up by Camellia, who has been a fan since the 1970s. “I wanted to set up this page in Memorial of David Cassidy,” said Camellia, “as he has lots of dedicated fans who followed him here in the UK and supported him in all he did. Towards the end of David’s life he was very open about his addiction to alcohol and the effects it caused him physically and emotionally. He died way too young as many do from alcohol-related liver disease. An online memorial for fans to leave messages seemed a fitting tribute to him in recognition of his struggle. A final token of love from fans. And to highlight the amazing charity that helps all affected by this.”

British Liver Trust is very grateful to Camellia and all those who find comfort in setting up online tributes to loved ones – wherever and however they were loved.

To see David’s page and the lovely memories and comments of his fans, please go to:

https://www.theonlinebookcompany.com/OnlineBooks/BritishLiverTrust/Celebrations/BookofMemories2/16

read more
Julie Pentecost‘Loved ones’ doesn’t just mean families and friends.

The wonderful consequences of Googling those we’ve lost

Among its many benefits, something quite wonderful about the internet is the opportunity it gives us to reconnect with people we’ve lost, either directly or indirectly.

From those early days of the likes of Friends Reunited, to today’s popular social networking sites, and of course Google, the internet has long provided us with a means not only of reconnecting, but of finding answers to the burning questions we may have about a friend, relative or acquaintance, or even someone we just know the name of, particularly when that person has passed away and is no longer on hand to answer for themselves.

In fact, with so much history and so many personal stories now online, the internet can provide great comfort to those seeking to fill in gaps in knowledge about a loved one’s life and build a better picture of them.

Increasingly too, these internet searches are bringing people to online remembrance books as people Google their relatives and discover either a book dedicated to that person, or a book they had contributed to.

Not only can these books provide longed for answers and delightful revelations, but they can also serve to connect people to others who knew and loved them, as well as to previously unknown details about their lives, as this example, a comment left in a RAF Benevolent Fund book for a soldier who died in Gallipoli, shows:

“I can’t believe how much my grandad did in his life. I just Googled his name and found this website. I just hope he is looking down on me with pride. What an amazing man he was, proud to call him my grandad.”

And reconnecting with lost loved ones in this way in some cases leads them to discovering even more invaluable information such as, in this particular case, where someone is buried:

“I have just stumbled across this page whilst trying to search for my mother’s brother Emlyn Wayne Francis who we lost touch with for over 20 years. It filled me with pride upon seeing this and I couldn’t wait to share it. I hope to visit his grave one day and thanks to this page I now know where he is resting.”

Most often though, the books provide much comfort at a difficult time, particularly when people had lost touch or been apart for a long period of time, as we see here:

“It is a real comfort for me to input my father’s name on Google and to source this tribute to him. I live in Australia so, apart from one brother and an aunt, my links to the UK have been somewhat diminished since his death. John’s death was quite sudden and very sad for me as I hadn’t seen him for five years.”

However, the emotions such discoveries can engender are also having benefits for charities.

Finding this new closeness with someone they cared about can lead people to want to do something good themselves, to follow in their loved one’s footsteps and support the same cause, to donate to a charity that they have found out once cared for them in some way, or to give to one in memory of a loved one who has died of the particular condition that charity focuses on.

This might be a one-off in-memoriam donation, or it can prompt people to go further and become a regular giver, or even to leave a legacy themselves.

This appeared in a book of remembrance for the Guide Dogs Association:

“Auntie Lily was a supporter and left a legacy to the Guide Dogs.  I have known her for 57 years and was unaware of this until she passed away. It was unbelievable how the subject never cropped up in conversation.  Being made aware that she supported Guide Dogs has made me more of an avid supporter as well.  Knowing that Auntie Lily had left a legacy encouraged me to leave a legacy also.”

There are many reasons why people take to Google in a quest for information but it’s wonderful to think that not only is the internet helping people by answering their questions and providing comfort at times of need, but also having another very positive, if unintended, consequence of bringing new support to charities.

read more
Julie PentecostThe wonderful consequences of Googling those we’ve lost

A Roaring Success: The Born Free Foundation

The lion, represents, courage, wisdom, dignity, justice, authority and more. However these qualities and symbolism make the lion to a few, an attractive animal to ‘hunt’.

Hence, illustrating the reasons behind the worldwide uproar (pardon the pun), when American dentist Walter Palmer, ‘hunted’ and killed Cecil the lion. The plight of the lion is however, not limited to high profile events such as this. Across the world, Lions are in many places still kept as pets, as entertainment providers in vastly unsuitable environments which fail to meet their most basic needs.

Founded in 1984 by the ‘Born Free’ actors Bill Travers MBE and Virginia McKenna OBE, and their son Will Travers OBE,  the ‘Born Free Foundation’ takes action worldwide to save lives, stop suffering and protect species in the wild.

Born Free, fight the ivory trade and sport hunting, hence helping to ensure lions like Cecil are able to live up to their symbolic prowess in the wild, born free and living free.

The book we created for The Born Free Foundation is a special place for their supporters to share and celebrate memories of loved ones, including both humans, and animals. Born Free are a fantastic organisation who we are very proud to work with, so please do consider leaving a message, remember a loved one and even leave a gift in your will to ensure they can continue protecting wild animals worldwide

This is what they had to say about us!

 ‘A huge thanks to our friends at the Online Book Company for the wonderful service we have received in getting this lovely book up and running and on our website’

Keep your eye’s peeled for the Launch of the Born Free Foundation Online Book….don’t forget to have a look at the Born Free Foundation website!

 www.bornfree.org.uk

x

 Born Free Foundation Logo

The Born Free Foundation: Keep Wildlife in the Wild

read more
Bethany HibbsA Roaring Success: The Born Free Foundation