I'm publishing this letter I received from an amazing woman named Jackie because of how deeply it inspired and moved me. Jackie is a kindergarten teacher from Boston and she is a real life hero. Humans like Jackie are exactly what the word needs more of. Her letter and the countless others I receive daily about how Angel has and continues to save and inspire lives is proof that the truth and inherent goodness that is Angel will never stop just because her body did. Angel and her legacy will outlive us all.
I am a kindergarten teacher in Boston and volunteer for an amazing dog rescue. I really make it a priority in my classroom to talk to my students about the importance of being kind to animals. We read a lot of books about animals, and stories about dogs in shelters.
I wear my Angel shirt on Fridays for "Fun Friday" and the kids started to notice. (I hope they don't notice that I wear the same pants every day!) Fridays have turned into "Fur Fridays" where we read a book about an animal and do a project related to it. The past several weeks have been dedicated to celebrating Angel. We talked about her journey and amazing life, we looked at pictures of her, read books about dogs, colored pictures of her (attached), and made dog bones that we sold in school. (We raised $32.00 - SO much money for these kids! It will be donated to SUFP.) It was really cool to see them so excited to talk to people about dogs and why they made the dog bones. These young kids are so innocent and honest, and are going to be the ones to teach others about the importance of being kind to animals. Our cookie stand had a big picture of Angel and people asked who she was. The kids were so excited to talk about their "friend Angel." The students don't have any biases or pre-conceived notions of a pitbull vs. any other dog. They know that Angel and dogs that look like her are sweet, cute, and fun dogs! It gives me hope to know to see these kids so excited to talk about dogs and how to be nice to them. It gives me hope for the future of these dogs.
My mom and I went to the Stand Up For Pits show in NYC a couple weeks ago, and it was such a special night. It was so special to be surrounded by so many people who are as passionate and committed to pit bulls and educating people about them as I am. I could feel the love and passion in the room immediately.
I have been thinking a lot about working with animals and ways to reach students other than my own and teach them about being nice to all creatures. The event in NY was my wake-up call. I know that it is time for me to dedicate my time and effort to humane education and educating communities about caring for animals, rescuing and adoption, and eliminating biases against certain breeds. I am leaving the classroom to dedicate my time to creating a humane education program that will teach caring and kindness of all living things. You and Angel have inspired me to do that.
Angel's mission and purpose is very much alive. The work you do is incredible. The world is a better place because of you two. My rescued pit bull, Molly, and all the amazing dogs like her and Angel have benefitted from what you do, and it has inspired me to continue the conversation in order to educate people and advocate from these dogs.
I'm attaching a few pictures from our week. (It's hard to get kindergarten students to sit still!) My favorite is the picture of Lia coloring the picture of Angel. It is so powerful to me - this young student coloring a picture of a large pit bull with no reservations or thoughts other than "I want to make her pretty in pink!" The picture from outside is us drawing dogs with chalk and practicing writing the word DOG. (I'm wearing my Angel shirt, of course.) There is also a picture of students holding up some of the books we read about dogs - all picture books about shelter animals and adopting. I'm also attaching the coloring page I made of Angel in case you want use it in an way. (There's also a picture of my dog, Molly, because she's just so cute!)
Thank you for all you do. It is so clear how much you love Angel and that she is your "person." You both are so lucky to have each other, and we are so lucky to be able to witness your special bond."
To learn more about the Stand Up For Pits Foundation and Angel go to standupforpits.us
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