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(Oct. 31, 2002, Gazette)

Paws for thought


Ernest Rollman (L) and Cathy Rowe
Photo by Chris Hammond
Ernest Rollman (L) and Cathy Rowe

It’s about wanting to learn more, and ultimately creating a community that is compassionate to both animals and humans, explained Kathy Rowe and Ernst Rollmann, station manager and program director, respectively, at Memorial’s radio station CHMR-FM. The two have combined their mutual love of radio and animals to create a weekly show, an award-winning Web site, and a registered charity, all in the name of educating the public about the ethical treatment of animals.

“About two years ago, I started noticing that more needed to be done in the community for animals,” said Ms. Rowe. “The number of animals being euthanised was atrocious. I knew that more proactive measures needed to be taken, for cats, dogs, and non-domestic animals. Education, especially for children, is the key.”

Animal News and Views, airing live every Tuesday and Friday from 11 a.m.-12 p.m. on 93.5 FM, began in 1998 as a five-minute pet-care segment, and has grown into Newfoundland's only animal rights/welfare radio program. The program features domestic animal care issues in the Furball Feature, animals making the news in Animal Affairs, and animal campaigns for compassion in Take Action For Animals.

With the success of their radio show, Ms. Rowe and Mr. Rollmann decided to go one step further, creating, in 2000, the Newfoundland and Labrador Humane Society (NLHS). “The mandate of the NLHS,” according to Mr. Rollmann, “is CARE: Compassion, Advocacy, Responsibility, and Education. By writing articles for the NLHS’ Web site and newsletter, speaking to children and adolescents about responsible pet-care, fostering animals to good homes, and maintaining a library of lendable resources, we are trying to change the way society is doing things.”

With a radio station, a radio show, a Web site, a newsletter, and a charitable organization to run, these Memorial employees are continuously learning — about animals, themselves, and even humans.

“Animals have so much to teach us about how we treat one another,” said Ms. Rowe. “We take a lesson from them, respecting where each human being is coming from, and appreciating what they can do, as well as what they would prefer not to. We’re truly thankful for any involvement that people are able to give.”

To learn more or to get involved, see www.nlhs.ca or e-mail NLHS@
dog.com
.