Sometimes, I have to look on the bright side. Otherwise, I get too pessimistic.
And there is a bright side. The bright side being the countless decent men and women and even children who fight for the rights and well being of animals.
I'd like to take a moment to single out Yang Xiaoyun, age 60, from Tianjin in northeastern China. This woman is a true heroine who has gone into debt, risked angering family members, and works every day from sunup to sundown.
Why? To take care of countless stray cats and dogs. In fact, her shelter houses some 300 abandoned cats and dogs. Many of them had histories of being abused and mutilated before arriving at her shelter. She calls them "my children."
As Yang pointed out in a recent interview:
None of my friends or family members support my work. I had two properties. One was a wedding gift for my son for when he gets married. I sold his place in 2000. He was very angry at me and ran away from home for three years. He couldn't take it anymore. (Source)
Luckily, Yang's son returned to help her. But she was forced to move numerous times due to complaints from neighbors. Each month, Yang faces $2,000 (US) in monthly expenses. She has managed to get by thanks to the donations of kind people around the world.
Yang has an interesting story: Years ago, after her husband died in the 1990s, she grew despondent. She felt like her life had lost meaning and she was contemplating suicide when she found an abandoned kitten in a ditch. She found something else, too: Her calling.
But it's not easy. It's a thankless job. It takes her nine hours a day to prepare food - which typically consists of cooked leftovers mixed with meat - for all of the animals in her shelter.
Yang has a Blog, but it's in Chinese. Like so many wonderful people taking care of animals, she is looking for donations. More information on donating can be found here.
Yang is the kind of person who helps restore my faith in humanity. She is doing great work. She is making a difference. The animals in her shelter are loved and well cared for, many for the first time in their lives.
Yang's struggle is daunting, yet her compassion is yet another source of inspiration for those of us who refuse to give up the good fight for our animal friends.
I have posted a video on Yang and her shelter below. Have a look if you get a chance.
God bless you, Yang Xiaoyun.