General Question

ubersiren's avatar

I want to save the world's creatures. Where do I start?

Asked by ubersiren (15170points) January 7th, 2010

I’m terribly troubled by the endangerment of animals, especially those violently mistreated by humans. Last night I watched the documentary, The Cove. Please go to the site and read the little paragraph describing the movie where it says “The Truth is Out. Spread the Word.”

I’ve never really been an activist, but every time I hear that something like this is going on that I never knew about before, my fire is reignited to help. I was up all night thinking about this film. It’s not just whales and dolphins that I want to help, but the Canadian seals, elephants, poached animals in general, and even animals affected by pollution and deforestation.

How can I help spread the word about this type of thing and actually help myself with limited resources? Right now, I only make a small amount of babysitting money, but I hope to own my own small business someday, from which I will donate regularly to a charity.

Which charities do the most widespread good? What else can I do besides donate and write letters? I’m not sure traveling to Japan and across the world is really an option any time soon. I feel obligated to start now. How can I do the most good right now?

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42 Answers

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Any time is a good time to become an activist – research existing organizations out there that are working on preservation, align yourself with them via donation and volunteering and start spreading the word via facebook via twitter via email via flyers via word of mouth – read all that you can on the topic, change your life accordingly, and welcome to the thankless difficult word of trying to change other people’s minds on issues they don’t find relevant immediately to their own lives – it’s awesome! :) no really, it is.

Grisaille's avatar

Please start by saving us from ourselves.

janbb's avatar

Do some research on the World Wildlife Fund and the National Wildlife Federation – I’d provide links but I am on the run. These are two very worthwhile orgs that work on exactly what you looking for.

CaptainHarley's avatar

Start now by decreasing your carbon footprint as much as possible, converting everything you use or own to “green,” and ( if you’re really into this ) going vegetarian.

syz's avatar

Money is not the only way to support an organization – have you considered volunteering for a cause that you believe in? You can have an even bigger impact if you organize “volunteer parties” with your friends. You get to catch up with each other, hang out, and get something good done all at the same time.

ubersiren's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir: Thank you for your thoughtful answer! It looks like I have some research to do… Facebook and twitter could help immensely to spread the word on certain issues. Maybe even starting a blog eventually, once I know what I’m doing…

@Grisaille Believe me, I’m concerned about us, too. But part of saving humanity is keeping us from screwing up the eco-system. Humans are affected by these issues, too. That’s part of why the documentary was so great- it showed how humans are suffering from what is happening. I can’t change all of humanity, so I figure this is a good way to sort of work on two areas at once.

@syz Yes! That’s what I’m talking about… where do I sign up? Where can I go, locally? (Central Maryland)

wonderingwhy's avatar

a lot of great answers up there. also consider volunteering at a local animal shelter and/or adopting an older pet – everyone adopts kittens and puppies but the 10 year old dog/cat in the corner needs a home too and supporting no kill shelters in your area with donations and a free pair of hands. You could also become a foster for animals waiting to be adopted.

marinelife's avatar

You can work on projects that legislate the kind of activities that you are opposed to.

Master0fPuppets's avatar

Looks like they’ve got the answers handled – but I wanted to say kudos for your wanting to help conserve nature. Not many people realize we’re a major part of it, and if we don’t do something soon to turn around the damage we’ve done, we’re all screwed – not just the “animals”.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

I’m saving some of the world’s creatures in the freezer on my back porch.

dpworkin's avatar

You can help end a great deal of suffering by encouraging people to spay and neuter their domestic pets.

ubersiren's avatar

@CyanoticWasp As long as you’re going to eat them and not just stuffing them in there… :o). Got any deer bologna?

mammal's avatar

start with yourself sweetheart.

dpworkin's avatar

What does that even mean?

ubersiren's avatar

Well that was certainly vague. :) Care to explain a little, @mammal?

Fyrius's avatar

Here‘s an easy way to make a modest contribution.

Pazza's avatar

If you give just 2 pounds a month….....
You can adopt a penguin with the WWF….....your penguin will send you monthly texts…..
Plant a hedge and save the sparrows….......


Funny how you never hear “Adopt a homeless person!”

dpworkin's avatar

Yeah, well, they crap in your shoes.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@Pazza I hope you understand the difference between a homeless person and a penguin.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

@pdworkin… homeless people, or penguins?

@Simone_De_Beauvoir, it sounds like there’s a joke in there, but I’m afraid to ask for the punchline.

ubersiren's avatar

I can’t help but think I’m being mocked by Pazza. Not cool, dude. Plus, you’re response was unhelpful and a little retarded.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@CyanoticWasp—sadly, no…I was hoping that statement, in itself, sounds like a joke…because I don’t want to know the answer—

janbb's avatar

Adopt me for 2 quid a month and I’ll send you monthly texts! (See @Pazza ‘s suggestion above.)

And I promise not to crap in your shoes.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

@ubersiren Identify an organization whose activities best fit with your goal and make even a modest donation. Many hands make the work easier. As part of a dedicated group of people, your support in every way possible, donation, demonstration, education, conservation all contribute to the cause.

HungryGuy's avatar

First, build a really big boat (I think there’s instructions for one in some book written, oh, about 2000 years ago). And then just sail around the world and collect two of everything…

flo's avatar

Re. the film that you saw, did they not provide a ” if you want to make a contribute to the solution go to…..” kind of message?
Some of the answers above have done a good job of giving you what you are looking for.

Pazza's avatar

I do appologise, the comment wasn’t a snipe at you personaly. In England, there are a million and one adverts about saving the animals by donating money to the WWF (I think they do animal wrestling), but you never see an advert about helping people get off the streets, off drugs, out of abusive homes etc. etc. etc…...

I also think that the correct response to a retard like myself would mirror @pdworkin‘s & @Simone_De_Beauvoir‘s responses.
though I also think the use of the word ‘retard’ is a little retarded!

Almost my entire response repertoire is meant in a light heated mannor, unless you attack me directly, and in a mannor I deam unnecessary.

Do feel free to have another pop, I’ve already had my rant.

Ps. look out for HungryGuy, I think he also fits your retard criteria lol

majorrich's avatar

A good place to start, if you are in the US, is to recycle or reuse all those thousands of plastic grocery bags and use a reusable bag. I am really suspicious of paying the rubbish man extra for recycling, having seen one of their trucks emptying at the landfill. Reuse things that can be, such as aluminum foil, and take cans and such to the waste metals places that actually pay you for the metals. Copper, Aluminum, Steel at the salvage yard.

YARNLADY's avatar

@ubersiren I do understand that you apparently believe that there is a class of “creature” that needs our protection. It is very vague to include every creature on the earth. In the overall progress of time, some creatures will disappear, and others will thrive. It is not the province of humans to choose which one will be the “lucky” ones. In my opinion, the best we can do is to ensure that the deliberate, inhumane eradication of a species is brought to the attention of others.

Your best plan of action is to do what you can to educate your fellow human of the worst abuses. I see that as being the indiscriminate propogation of household pets. I advocate that you join in local no-kill shelters, by urging your friends and neighbors to contriubte their support, and do volunteer work.

ubersiren's avatar

@YARNLADY : My title was half joke. Of course I don’t intend to save the all world’s creatures. I don’t believe there is a class of creature that needs our help from becoming naturally extinct. I’m most concerned about ones that humans are wiping out by the hundreds of thousands each year. That’s not natural, and that’s what the film in my link is about. I sure hope you and the two people who gave you great answers, agreeing with you, understand that.

I’m very concerned with pet abuse, but that’s a whole separate issue. For this question’s purpose I’m talking about ending needless mass slaughter brought forth by human carelessness and greed. I’m talking about the Canadian seal hunts, deforestation, the BLM horse slaughter, etc.

@all I hope everyone is clear on what I’m asking for. I wasn’t aware I was coming off as such a flake.

Also, I already am known in my family as the recycling Nazi, buy green products, use only reusable shopping bags, and donate to various environmental charities. This has never been a problem. I’m looking to be more of an activist against mass animal killings as I mentioned in my description.

Thanks for all your help.

Dr_Lawrence's avatar

You will make a difference @ubersiren . Thank you for giving a shi r t about our impact of other species.

YARNLADY's avatar

Animal Welfare Volunteer Opportunities is a good place to start, and don’t let us forget that humans are creatures too. 20,000 men, women and children starve to death every single day of the year. You can help end world hunger by visiting The hunger Site every day. With one click, once a day, the sponsors donate food to help. You can also play games to help end world hunger at

Pazza's avatar

(I read more of your comments) Glad to see your an activist. Not that I think your looking for my approval its just nice to see sombody with the nuts to act instead of just looking to spend 2 pounds a month to adopt a penguin and remove that guilty feeling inside.

I don’t know if you’ve seen it, but another good video to watch is Earthlings, its good, really good to act and create awareness but the way I see it, the system has to change before we can trully prevent these things from happening. As long as the system encourages people to exploit and abuse animals and their environment for profit, then we will never be able really change anything.

ubersiren's avatar

@Pazza Thank you, that seems worth checking out.

flo's avatar

@Fyrius how did you make it go “here”, in your answer above? Is it a less time consumming thing?

Pazza's avatar

Yes, apparently homeless people crap in your shoes, whereas its too far to walk for penguins to crap in your shoes. lol

Also penguins are easier to spot when it snows.

janbb's avatar

@flo To make any word a link, use the formatting for linking in the formatting directions line that appears at the bottom of the answer box when you are composing an answer. Follow that formatting exactly and your words will appear as a link.

SoccerBabe145's avatar

I love animals including penguins! What i would do is make a banner at a parade and raise money, i am going to this this year so if you would like to join me it would be awesome….... my friends are to…... i will be raising money with a basket in my hand and my friends will be holding the banner….........hope you like this i dea…... Thanks!

LyreBirdGirl's avatar

not sure if anyone has yet posted this but…
I help out with backyard birds. Sure they may not be directly mistreated by humans, but the habitat destruction, over-hunting, and much more has caused a terrible outcome for birds, and other creatures alike. Plant some bushes for nesting and burrowing animals. City home? No problem, just put some plants in pots and the animals will find them. These are all cheap ways to help animals near you but…There are also a number of trustworthy sites to donate to. Audubon or Citizen Action sites both use your money in ways that help the habitat. You can also work at a pet shelter to help abandoned and hurt pets, hope I have helped!

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