Our Earth is hurting…earthquakes, tsunami’s, animals falling from the sky and icebergs melting.
Do you ever sit and wonder where it all went wrong? I often wonder who is to blame and I get angry knowing that it was generations before us that started the snowball effect that has led our planet to be in such a state. I too take blame for my generations lack of interest in saving our planet, but proudly say I am an avid recycler, I plant trees and fruit seeds whenever I can (wherever I can!) and I refuse to eat Shrimp or Fish that is not in season (so to discourage poaching).
I take comfort in knowing the little I do really DOES make a difference and if everyone did the same as I (or more) then our planet would not be hurting so much.
March and April has seen much devastation already, with the shocking images we’ve seen come out of Japan.
The earthquake, followed by a huge Tsunami, hit the countries north populations on March 11th. The hardest hit city was Sendai, with the city being literally swept away in just under a few hours. It’s hard to imagine what being there would feel like…I mean, what would be going through the people’s minds? I just can’t imagine it!! What horror!
Well, all we could do was watch it unfold on tv and pray…hoping that those who survived would be rescued and those who did not would be found to give their families peace of mind.
Lela sat patiently, as she also watched it all unfold and so April will be dedicated to Japan. 100% of the donations will go to Japan to help families who have been left homeless and children that have lost their parents. The death toll as of Wednesday has reached a horrific 12,468 with thousands still missing. We hope we can raise a record number for these victims and help them in same way, even if it is by giving them a little hope.
On a lighter note, we’re proud to say we raised a whooping $1722 New Zealand Dollars which went to the Red Cross in Christchurch, NZ to help those who most needed it after the earthquake they went through.
We’ll have some more updates on which group will be used for Japan. There are so many charities helping out there and we want to make sure we pick one that has little, if any, admin costs, so that help is really reached to those who need it.
In the wake of the devastating earthquake which rocked New Zealand’s second largest city, Christchurch is left with the painstaking task of rebuilding a city which was hit hard by the 6.3 earthquake on Tues, 22 Feb, 2011.
Images and video footage of the earthquake bring back memories of the Chilean earthquake, with people looking around, not knowing who to turn to or what to do.
Having lived in New Zealand for a total of three years, it pained me to see the distress this earthquake has caused. Less than six months prior, the same city suffered from another earthquake and the town was only just beginning to rebuild itself and its confidence.
I spent time further south in a city called Dunedin, a gorgeous city, filled with beautiful views, kind people and a port which invites anyone and everyone to visit the charming town. I had been there with my then boyfriend, a New Zealander who had moved to Melbourne for new opportunities. We met, fell in love and it was time to meet his family. When we decided to move to Dunedin, we had left everything behind to start a new life. I had already left home and had also moved to Sydney. My life of adventure was well on its way! Looking for work was easy, I had plenty of hospitality experience, so I joined the team at ‘The Reef Seafood Restaurant’ where I was the supervisor. I grew to love Dunedin. It’s people, it’s streets and even it’s weather (picture Seattle rain and its skies times 10!!).
Well, jump forward a good 13-14 years and that relationship did not work out, although we still stay in touch. I had taken several trips to Christchurch. I am a secret wine buff (oops, secret’s out!) so I enjoyed taking road trips to wineries in and around the Christchurch area. Many of you have probably even tried some of the wines!!
As you can see from the map, there are many wine regions in New Zealand and Christchurch is a popular one in Canterbury.
I still get online and look for photos and video of the earthquake, as I find it hard to believe that many of the places that I have been through are destroyed. Reports indicate that aftershocks are still disrupting many parts of the city, delaying the return of up to 1/3 of its residents.
LELA has chosen Christchurch as her cause for the month of March, and we will be donating 100% of her donations to the Red Cross in Christchurch, as we know they have feet on the ground over there. We’d like to thank all donors as this cause holds a special place in my heart.
For those who are lucky enough to ever get to New Zealand, you’ll get to enjoy the beauty of its people, its food, its cities and its wine, because anyone who goes to New Zealand and DOESN’T try a glass of Sauvignon Blanc should be locked up! 😉
I’d also like to send all our hopes and prayers to victims of the Japan earthquake. We are working towards making Lela in April for Japan, but as our planet cries out for help, we cross our fingers that no more earthquakes shake our world and leave others in need.
Sending our love,
Pamela and all the Dancing Chefs
Our little Lela has come a very long way! For the month of April, we have collected a whopping $754.47USD!!
We really are amazed at the generosity that everyone has shown for our little pig. As Leonique says, it’s truly amazing that a little pig, in a little tour, in the middle of Mexico, can help and reach so many people…
April donations will be heading to victims of the earthquake in Chile, which occurred a little while ago. As most of you know, I was born in Chile and have most of my relatives there. I have seen first hand the devastation through the eyes of my family, and the internet, I have seen photos, news footage and youtube clips of horrific damage, homelessness, destruction and looting.
It will always touch my heart to see people pulling together in times of desperation. And the support came from all over the world. Not only did we have people donate at the show, we had people donating online, from as far as India and as close as the USA. So thank you to everyone for their donations. Lela will continue helping those who need her help!
We recently sent off the donations to the West Virginia Red Cross Chapter, to help the wives and families of the 27 men who lost their lives. Our prayers go out to all those involved. A total of $118USD was sent and collected in less than 1 week.
It’s always fun to be able to come up with a new and innovative way to help others. LELA really has been fun, with our Facebook Album #2, LELA has had her photo taken with more than 400 people, making her one of the most charitable pigs in Mazatlan!
GO LELA GO!
Changing subjects, we are now in May – Happy May Day to you all! We have finally got our Newsletter up and running, so expect us in your inbox within the next 24hrs, with lots of fun new stuff for you to remember us by!
Haven’t joined the newsletter yet? It’s easy, just go onto our website and on the top right, there is a box for Newsletter Sign Up. Takes 5 seconds 🙂
We have a fun and exciting giveaway, so be sure to check it out! Again, we thank everyone for their charitable donations and we hope the end of one month, brings change and a new sense of well being into the new month!
Hooray for May!
lots of love
(aka dancing chef!)
For those who have yet to visit our new website, we have a section on there about LELA, our donation Pig. Her mission is to collect 250,000 paracetamol tablets and send them to where they are needed most. Every time we have ships docked in port, we bring her out and people give what they can to help her reach her goal. If you haven’t seen her in action, take a quick peek at our Facebook Lela Album, where we have over 150 photos of people donating and holding (and recently kissing!) little Lela.
Lela is an integral part of our tour. It’s our way of “giving back”…
Since January 2010, we have collected nearly $1000USD from guests who have donated to each worthy cause.
Jan 14 – Feb 27 donations went to Haiti (after the devastating earthquake there)
Feb 28 – April 6 donations going to Chile (a personal cause, as I was born there and have most of my family there…)
April 7 donations going to West Virginia (a horrible mining accident killed a total of 29 miners)
April 8 – present donations going to Chile (so much work and help is still needed there…we just don’t hear about it anymore)
We have been lucky enough to find a contact for each cause. For Haiti, we had a lovely young lady named Kara Telesmanick join the tour back in March and found out she had been working in Haiti with children when the earthquake happened. Kara was on a mission of her own, to help undernourished children with the CNP (Children’s Nutrition Program of Haiti). Have a quick look at the You Tube video for what they are about 😉 (**a special thanks to Laura Lindroth for her help and attention**)
We are proud to say we raised a total of $413USD for Haiti and look forward to sharing photos with you in relation to the kids in Haiti.
Here are Salsa and Salsa, we try our hardest to give back and ask that if you have friends or relatives that are able to donate, that you send them the link to this blog post 🙂 The more people that are aware of these disasters, the more help each cause will receive.
Leonique reminded me the day the Haiti donation was made, that we should take a moment out of our busy schedules to remember those who had passed on from each disaster. I had plans to go out for my friends birthday, and as I sat there in a nice fancy restaurant, looking at my fancy food and drinking my fancy wine, Leonique’s words echoed in my head and I took a moment to be grateful for what I had…sometimes we take for granted the simple things.
Thanks to all those who have helped make Lela the Pig such a great success. Donations online are always welcome and appreciated. We will keep you always informed as to her paracetamol count, available on the bottom left hand corner of our website!