Throughout my Freshman and Sophomore year of high school, I have been a member of the service group Animal Relief Club (ARC), which is dedicated to helping homeless animals and shelters. As I am a huge animal lover I figured this would be the perfect service club for me as I am involved with ARK outside of school and would like to continue helping within the YIS community as well. Being a part of this group I noticed that all leaders throughout the past two years have been talking about actually getting in contact with animal shelters, talking about making shelter visits and so on. However, none of the leaders these past two years have actually managed to make something they were talking about does happen, all that has been going on has been having a stall on Food Fair. Because of this, I thought it would be good to actually do something with the club to do what we all came to do, help animals. So for my Junior year, I prepared a speech and ended up becoming a leader this year until my Senior year in November.
As a leader of ARC, I will be preparing things for the group to do each year and taking action in actually going and physically helping shelters out as well as perhaps collecting materials such as blankets and things for dogs and cats (eg toys) to help the shelters out. We will also be doing donations from bake sales, and I am also planning to have employees from a shelter come in to talk to the club about what it is really like since a lot of people aren’t yet aware.
In January of being the leader of ARC, I got the group started on a project to do with the Yokohama community and helping all the stray cats in the region. On the project, I got us in contact with an organization who could help teach us how to capture the cats, then take them to the vet to get them spayed and neutered and then release them again. This is to ensure that the stray cat population stops increasing so rapidly. In May 2018 I organized for one staff member and one board member from the shelter ARK to come in and talk to the club about TNR (Trap Neuter and Return). We had this presentation in order to get started on out own TNR for cats around the school and the Motomachi area in order to lend a hand in reducing the exponential growing cat population here in Yokohama.
This year, as leaders, we have also partnered with the sustainability club in order to make vegan cosmetics. This is in order to promote anti-animal testing and being sustainable towards the environment. The sustainability group is in charge of making the containers, while ARC is in charge of making the actual cosmetics. The goal is to have a little label explaining why we are doing what we are doing, as well as a brochure to make people buying the product aware of the implications of animal testing.