First- a HUGE thank you to everyone who showed up for Pelusa. There was a great outpouring of support for her and it resulted in a fantastic fundraising event. Total donations for Pelusa’s medical fund were $57,330.60 through the Big Payback with approximately another $2,300.00 raised through PayPal. They haven’t posted our official end of the day bonuses, but GSE should be awarded a total of $10,063.00 in bonuses- the BIG total of the day- $69,693.60!!!!!!
Out of 904 nonprofits, we came in 3rd overall for most unique donors, this includes hundreds of much larger NGOs. We won most unique donors for our size, 3rd place most raised in our size, the Big Bang prize for our size, closest to sunset and several others. You guys are absolutely amazing!
This is going to sound really corny. Although we are thrilled with the funds raised for Pelusa, one of the things that still brings the most joy is the emails and comments from people who give and share. We literally read every email and message sent. We even read the comments section from the donations people made through the BPB site. Some were funny and cute; we loved how proud people seemed to be of following us from the beginning. Some messages were sincere and heartfelt. Some messages came from Argentina where the support means so much since it’s easy to see GSE an an organization coming in and taking Pelusa away. Some people shared the fundraiser and event with their whole family.
We ended up talking with some people we really like talking to, but worry about feeling like any time we approach them they think we are doing so for a donation. Overall it’s heartwarming to connect with people who share the same open heart and caring for elephants. You don’t have to give thousands to bring the biggest smiles to our faces and joy to the entire sanctuary. ‘From our herd to yours’ ‘to our sanctuary family’, these aren’t just phrases, we truly adore our supporters, their exuberance over helping elephants, how quickly and happily they answer other supporter emails, the camaraderie throughout our page and the genuine love you feel when talking to all of you. It is a gift and we absolutely love our sanctuary family. You guys are simply lovely.
And we would be remiss if we didn’t mention our wonderful group of volunteers who dedicate their time and love to helping us and our girls. Just two years ago we did this event without any assistance, and it always felt like there was a significant amount that wasn’t getting done, simply because we couldn’t. Now we have a ‘team’ that is beyond dedicated, lovely to work with and we wholly trust with what is most precious to us- the future of our elephants.
It takes all of us to make yesterday the enormous gift it was for Pelusa, but it all comes from the same source, the love and belief that elephants deserve something better. Thank you for getting to know our elephants, thank you for wanting to see them for who they truly are and thank you for opening your heart to all of them. We are forever grateful.