Since we announced that ‘Til The Cows Come Home is seeking foster carers – to hold the animals we collect until they are adopted – we have gotten a lot of interested people concerned that their kids are going to be too upset when the animals are rehomed. We understand this concern, and we are here to ease your mind by sharing with you the many benefits that will come with having your children involved in our foster care program with you. We believe that by volunteering to be foster carers, your children will gain invaluable life experiences while helping animals find their furever homes. Our founder, Donna Wild, has shared her experience with her 6-year-old daughter, Ever, with us to demonstrate what an amazing experience foster caring can be for your children!
Since ‘Til The Cows Come Home’s establishment in 2018, Donna has been lucky enough to be accompanied by her daughter for every collection of farmed animals in their area. Donna has found that Ever, who has always loved the animals coming and going, found the adoption process to be an incredible experience to be privy to. Ever knows that each animal that leaves is going to a great family who will love that animal dearly.
Ever has even accompanied Donna on the long collections, in particular one that involved a 10-hour drive each way, and another one that took up to 16 hours for 5 days in a row. What dedication in such a young being! In all collections, Ever would be there every step of the way and loving it. Once the animals were collected, Ever would then help Donna at the holding stations every day, helping out with the twice-daily feeds, spectating vet visits, sponge bathing the animals in need, and helping to treat the animals with their required medications or natural remedies. Many times, Ever saw death. However, much more often she would see potential death turned into life because TTCCH made it happen as Donna and Ever were there for the animals, giving them their second chance at life. We feel that these types of experiences for both adults and children are unmatched in that life, death, saving and rehoming is a part of any life well lived. Having your children involved in such amazing work helps build their character and compassion. Having the opportunity to look after and foster farmed animals teaches your children to be selfless, in that they will be involved in doing acts for a being who isn’t able to ask for help, and who will never give something back…what child in Australia wouldn’t benefit from experiencing that?
Donna has shared an insightful anecdote with us from her childhood that we believe really displays the benefits of getting your children involved in foster caring with us. Donna remembers her Mum suggesting to her younger self that she attend her mother’s friend’s funeral. Donna’s mother said that one day Donna may have to go to one of her loved one and that attending her friend’s funeral will prepare her for that in ways she may not be able to imagine since she wasn’t close to this person. We believe that fostering for us can be seen as preparation for life and death in the real world. Fostering is also selfless and joyous, it saves life and breeds compassion, empathy and kindness. What amazing traits for your children to have!
Our very first foster carers for TTCCH after Donna and her caring daughter were Jude and Phoebe, who are another mother-daughter team. Jude has raised Phoebe while always fostering wildlife. These learnings stay with children for life. So, if anyone is thinking that their children not wanting animals to leave when adopted is going to be a problem, think again. The experience is magic and will grow your children into compassionate beings!
By Donna Wild and Luella Botteon