May 2011 Newsletter

Hello Yogie Fans!

I am starting this update on a very serious note. On Tuesday 26 April 2011 our area experienced some very serious and devastating storms. There were several tornadoes in Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas, which we refer to here as the “Ark-La-Tex.” There was quite a bit of damage, but happily, there were no reported injuries or deaths in our area. A tornado did a great deal of damage in the Frierson-Kingston community about 6 miles south of Yogie and Friends. It was reported that about 100 utility poles were down and Yogie and Friends was without power for about three days.

At no time was there ever any damage or any animal escapes at Yogie and Friends. In fact, Yogie and Friends only received a lot of rain and a little wind. You would never have even thought there had been any bad weather in the area. One of the tigers, Gomez, was even swimming in his pool when all this weather around us was happening. Unfortunately there were several rumors that there were “Lions and tigers running loose in Frierson,” This was not so. Never, ever, did any animal escape their enclosures. A Desoto Parish Deputy even came to the property to verify that there was no damage and no escapes. All animals are, and always have been, present and accounted for.

Please rest assured that Yogie and Friends ensures that public safety is of utmost importance to us.

 Upgrade Status: We are happy to report that things are moving along toward getting our den houses onto the property. The Navy Construction Battalion (Seabees) from Barksdale Air Force Base spent the week with us clearing trees, building and leveling the land and dirt in the back of the animal habitats in preparation for the buildings that are being donated by CellXion of Bossier City. The only thing that was an issue was how to get the buildings off of the 18-wheeler and down the lane onto the Yogie property. Well, this issue is resolved thanks to the wonderful owner, John Parsons, of Deep South Equipment. He is going to loan the use of a special all terrain forklift that will be able to go over the road, onto the property, and even maneuver the buildings into place behind the habitats. This is such a relief and so appreciated.

Once the buildings are in place the next step is modifications. We hope to have the buildings in place within the next few weeks. Then they’ll need to be stripped of the electrical, air conditioners, and some other items. Reinforced doors will need to be created connecting the den houses to the habitats. A few other modifications will need to be made and then that will complete the requirements that the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries said we need to do in order renew our permit. Our deadline for them is July. We hope/expect to beat this deadline.

We will ask for volunteers to help with the strip down and modifications to the buildings once we do get them in place. We’ll send out e-mails and put this request on Face book as well. Keep watching for updates.

Combined Federal Campaign (CFC): Good news! We are back in CFC. There was a mix-up with last year’s program and this time we made sure that we were not missed. Our paperwork was filed as soon as we knew the date it could be submitted. There was no way we were going to miss this. Too many of our fans like to donate to Yogie this way. CFC is a Federal payroll deduction program that Federal and Military personnel can donate to the charity of their choice. If you are interested in contributing this way our CFC number is 42427

Volunteers of the Month: Our volunteers of the month are the guys from NMCB 28 Naval Mobile Construction Battalion, located at Barksdale Air Force Base. They did an awesome job for us getting the land prepared for the buildings coming from CellXion. They were with us all week and it was amazing watching the skills these guys have. This is what they do in the Navy and they knew just what to do to make things possible for us to meet our upcoming deadline. Thanks so much  EOC (SCW) Robert Shaw. CM1 (SCW) David McGowen. CM2 (SCW) Jason Manchester. CM3 (SCW) Joseph Murrell. You guys rock!

Also, a special thank you to 2Lt Ashley Dancer, 2Lt Scott Vaughn, 2Lt Brad Yuska, SrA Makenna Williams, and A1C Alyssa Daffer from the 26 OWS at Barksdale Air Force Base. They came out on April 26th to work on some other tasks that needed to be done. Thanks so much for your help!

 

 

 

Donations: We recently had a little financial setback when our much needed tractor broke down. It has been repaired, but it cost us over $1850 to do so. This tractor is a huge part of the necessary equipment we use at the sanctuary and we had to get it repaired. Fortunately this kind of repair extends the life of an item like this and helps us avoid having to purchase another at possibly $20,000 or more. Its running good as new, but we could use your financial assistance to help build up some much needed funds. We are trying to prepare for the den house modifications and know we will need to purchase materials for this. Rest assured that your donations are always used in the most effective and responsible way. We are 100% volunteer driven and all money goes to the care and upkeep of the animals and sanctuary. We are a no frills facility. It’s all about the animals. And remember that your donation is tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.

Face Book: Don’t forget to follow us on Face Book. We have a very active page and update it often with news and events as they happen. Tell all your friends about us. We’d love to get a huge fan base.

Kroger Neighbor to Neighbor Donation Program: The Enrollment period for the 2011-2012 Program Year is 1 June – 31 December 2011. The accumulation period is 1 July 2011 – 30 April 2012. This is the time frame that money is accumulated when you use your linked Kroger Plus Card.  If you are already a Neighbor to Neighbor participant, and Yogie and Friends is linked to your Plus Card, you will need to relink it again during the enrollment period. It is so easy to do. Just give the cashier the letter we have linked on our website. The old letters work since it is the same barcode. The cashier will scan that and your Plus Card and it will be linked. Every time you shop at a Kroger in Texas and Louisiana and use your card, then a percentage of the sale goes to Yogie and Friends. Kroger gives a portion of $1 Million to local Texas and Louisiana programs through this program. Let’s see if Yogie and Friends can be one of the top 20 this year. The top program made over $50,000 through this. We would love to see the big cats benefit by our shopping at Kroger.

A few ways to help financially:

An easy way you can help the cats is when you do your shopping on-line is by using iGive. If you do your shopping on-line then you can contribute by shopping through the iGive tool. Everything helps. Visit www.iGive.com and select Yogie and Friends as your cause when you shop. It’s so easy.

Coins for Cats! Do you empty your pockets of all your coin when you get home and throw them in a jar or piggy bank? Well, what a great way to get kids involved in fundraising help for the animals.  A little coin can go a long way! That little bit of effort can end up being a nice chunk of change.

Go Green with our ink jet and cell phone recycling program. This program has been doing very well. What a way to help the big cats and environment all at the same time. It’s an easy way to get kids involved as well.  Details are listed on our website.

We have several programs for you to help our animals: www.magfundraising.com, www.igive.com, Cause ID 19883, www.networkforgood.org, www.goodsearch.com, just to name a few. They are all listed here on our website.

Please come out and visit the sanctuary and see how well loved and cared for these animals are. It’s also very educational for our visitors.

Jenny and the Yogie Cats! 


Posted in Monthly Newsletter