Tracy Holmes photo Rescued Siberian husky Beau shows his excitement while posing for a photo with students Alijah Sigmund (left) and Francis Lee-Meyer.

South Surrey students set sights on husky-rescue group

Burnaby organization that rescues Siberian huskies from high-kill shelters to benefit

A pair of Semiahmoo Secondary students have taken a dogged approach to a year-end assignment – and Francis Lee-Meyer and Alijah Sigmund hope the end result of their effort will be better lives for rescued Siberian huskies.

The teens, in Grade 11, launched a GoFundMe campaign this month in response to the challenge posed by their social-justice teacher.

As of Monday (April 22), $360 had been raised for Danielle’s husky’s to the Rescue. The teens have their sights set on raising at least $1,000.

“She rescues huskies from high-kill shelters in California,” Lee-Meyer said last week, of Burnaby resident Danielle Callaghan.

“She spends all her money to helping them.”

The teens were inspired to help the rescue organization after learning about the dogs through Amanda Ghilarducci, a learning support assistant at Semi who adopted her husky, Beau, from Danielle’s, and has often shared photos and updates about the two-year-old dog with the students.

“They feel like they know him,” Ghilarducci said.

“My phone is full of photos and I talk to them about him all the time.”

Ghilarducci said she “fell in love with the breed” about five years ago, after rescuing her first husky, Breeze, from the SPCA. She learned about Callaghan’s organization while searching for a ‘sibling’ for Breeze.

READ MORE: 22,000 abused, abandoned animals rescued by the BC SPCA in 2018

While she and her husband had to forego that quest after discovering past abuse had rendered Breeze’s temperament incompatible with other dogs, Ghilarducci returned to Callaghan’s organization after Breeze developed a mass in her heart and had to be euthanized.

“Our house was so empty without a dog,” Ghilarducci said.

They’ve had Beau for about six months now.

Lee-Meyer is no stranger to having a dog – his family owns a year-old Rottweiler-blue heeler cross. Ollie is “helping me get off my screen more,” Lee-Meyer said.

Both he and Sigmund share a love for dogs and want to do what they can to benefit animal rights and quash animal cruelty.

“They’re living beings, they have emotions and they feel pain, the same way we do, (and) they should be treated the same way,” Lee-Meyer said.

“I think of dogs as like humans,” Sigmund said, adding it’s “not right” to put them in high-kill shelters.

In addition to funds, Sigmund and Lee-Meyer are collecting dog toys, treats, collars and other items for the rescue organization.

Ghilarducci said word of the students’ quest brought tears to Callaghan’s eyes. Lee-Meyer and Sigmund said they are considering other events that could bolster the campaign, which is continuing until about mid-June.



tholmes@peacearchnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

BC Superweek cycling series set to kick off in North Delta

At Tour de Delta, California-based Kendall Ryan will aim to repeat last summer’s three-race win

Street dance competition outdoors in Surrey on first day of summer break

DJ, prizes, activities, a food truck and more Friday at Surrey City Hall Plaza

‘Epic’ Surrey Pride party to celebrate 20th anniversary at Central City Plaza

Planners of family-friendly event don’t welcome nudity

Surrey city council cost taxpayers nearly $1M in 2018

That includes more than $151,372 in expenses from the former council

Judge adjusts Charter award in RCMP assault case in Surrey

Former Surrey hotel manager was awarded $65,000 in damages after RCMP assaulted him

VIDEO: Tributes flow on 10th anniversary of Michael Jackson’s death

Jackson received a fatal dose of the anesthetic propofol on June 25, 2009. He died at age 50

VIDEO: Killer whale steals fisherman’s catch off North Coast

Fishing duel results in eager orca snagging salmon in Prince Rupert

40 cats surrendered in apparent hoarding at B.C. home

Officers found the cats living among piles of garbage and feces, suffering from fleas

Tsilhqot’in Nation urges Taseko Mines to stop drilling plans before conflict grows

Nation said Teztan Biny area is of ‘profound cultural and spiritual importance’

Vancouver Aquarium drops cetacean ban lawsuit in new lease agreement

Ocean Wise CEO Lasse Gustavsson called the updated lease an exciting new chapter for the aquarium

Plane veers off runway, into ditch at Langley Airport

Fire, ambulance, and police are on scene

Okanagan RCMP bike patrol rolls up on alleged stolen vehicle from Burnaby

The driver, a 30-year-old Kelowna man, has been held in custody and is facing possible charges of possession of stolen property and obstructing a police officer

Mother of NHLer Carey Price elected chief of B.C. First Nation

Lynda Price previously served as chief of Ulkatcho First Nation from 2005-2009

Man arrested after pimping investigation in Whistler

A 44-year-old man has been charged with procuring and benefiting from sexual services

Most Read