Which ties into my last night’s soiree – the yearly animal fundraising and awareness event that helps these four-legged “victims” in Dallas. This party, hosted pro-bono by Holly Forsythe at Sambuca Uptown, is called “Real Men Care” and raises money for two key and essential groups in animal welfare, Dallas Animal Advocates and Metroplex Animal Coalition.
Dallas Animal Advocates (DAA) is the support organization for Dallas Animal Services and provides equipment and supplies that the city cannot afford, thus improving the quality of life for the animals at the shelter. DAA also helps the numerous rescue groups pay for heartworm treatments and other veterinary expenses for adoptable DAS animals. Outside the shelter, DAA works with low-income dog owners to replace or repair fences, enabling them to unchain their family pets.
The other group, Metroplex Animal Coalition (MAC), is an alliance of more than 50 nonprofit animal welfare organizations in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. MAC strives to reduce the killing of dogs and cats in municipal animal shelters and humane societies through a spay-neuter program that enables low-income pet owners to fix their pets at no cost.
Do we need these two groups? Absolutely! Do they need your help? Absolutely, and a huge yes!
The “Real Men Care” event celebrates selected men who have excelled in their own personal animal welfare efforts. These three men not only love animals, but have exhibited the highest caliber of character, commitment and compassion, therefore saving the lives of countless animals who have relied on the heroic efforts of each man, in his own way.
Amidst a crowd of several hundred, David Alex (Dallas Assistant District Attorney), Jim Clutts (president of Echo-Point Mortgage) and Skip Trimble (a founding member of MAC and a prominent Texas attorney) were all honored for their critical efforts in animal welfare.
Assistant District Attorney David Alex (working closely with an animal-loving legal team under Dallas County District Attorney, Craig Watkins) has worked tirelessly on several animal cruelty cases – which are notoriously difficult to prosecute. But, progress is definitely being made for animals entering the legal system, and David Alex is leading the way. Proof has shown that as long as David is on the case, the abused animals will have their day in court.
Most Dallasites have met Skip Trimble, raised in Oak Cliff and truly a Dallas angel for the animals. Skip was one of the founding members of MAC and helped launch the low- cost SPCA of Texas Spay-Neuter & Wellness Clinic at Village Fair. Skip was honored for his decades of groundbreaking work with the Dallas Animal Shelter Commission and the Texas Humane Legislation Network. Due to Skip’s relentless work, thousands of Dallas’ four-legged friends are forever in his debt.
The third “Real Man” is a Lakewood-ite who has made a tremendous difference in the lives of so many discarded animals in need – many animals who initially weren’t even a candidate for adoption due to temperament and health issues. I first met Jim, president of Echo-Point Mortgage, last year when he launched a money making project for the SPCA of Texas through his business website, EchoPoint Mortgage. For every “like” on his website, (which features adoptable animals at Dallas Animal Services), $1 was donated, along with $250 for every loan, resulting in thousands of dollars for the SPCA of Texas. Jim and his team even created an enlightening and educational video about shelter animals – the first thing every visitor sees on the website.
In February, EchoPoint Mortgage conducted a “look-alike” contest for realtors and their dogs, raising funds for MAC.
He has also worked behind the scenes to save many animals at Dallas Animal Services (many of those adoptable animals whose time was up) through his support with various local animal rescue organizations that take DAS pets into their adoption programs.
Jim and his wife Karis are two business leaders who stepped up and asked how they could help the Dallas Companion Animal Project. Through the efforts of the team at Echo-Point Mortgage, these unique projects for the animals were created and implemented. As Jim announced last night, it will definitely take “the entire community working together” for Dallas to reach the No-Kill any Adoptable Animal goals.
“However,” he added, “With the numerous rescue groups and organizations working for the animals, we can make it happen!”
So, thank you David, Skip and Jim for your 100-plus percent commitment and dedication to helping those who cannot speak for themselves. As we animal lovers know, the gifts we receive from these four-legged creatures far out weigh what we do for them.
These are the family members always at our side who comfort us in our greatest needs. These discarded, loving animals wait patiently at DAS, in other shelters and at foster homes all over. Every one of them deserves his or her own loving home.
These three men have all determined their own passion and talent. Every Dallas citizen can do the same thing. First of all, please promote adoption and then find your expertise area to “give back” – just like David, Skip and Jim!
There is a need for everyone within the Dallas Companion Animal Project! Check it out at dallascopanionanimalproject.org
Statistics show that of all dogs and cats in our homes, fewer than one in five come from shelters or rescue groups.
If we were able to increase that percentage of adopted animals by just one percent, we could prevent the euthanasia of more than three million healthy and treatable pets in America. Let’s start with Dallas!