While most of us were consumed with the Olympic Games, there was (and is) a disaster of epic proportions in Louisiana, worse than Katrina. Jodie Kelly knows a thing or two about hurricanes and floods. Jodie Kelly Dressage in Destin, Florida is in the Panhandle of the state just east of Louisianna and New Orleans. Jodie and her Mom Laurie have a hurricane disaster plan for their barn they have put into action on several occasions. When disaster struck in their neighboring state Jodie contacted her clients, and hay supplier and the now her rescue mission has taken on epic proportions as well.
"I saw of lot of places over there were desperate for hay. People were donating hay 10 and 20 bales at a time, which was amazing, but that gives no consistency in the hay quality, and some of the rescue places have 300 and 400 horses and cows, some places more.
So, I called our hay guy and he was willing to deliver an entire load of the hay we get in our round bales, which I know is good quality and the most "bang for my buck" For $4000 we had 30,000 pounds of hay delivered.
In the mean time, our local refuge was trying to get 6 rescue horses, and needed to raise the money to pay the shipper. So, I sent a text to my "team" clients friends in the area, and then bragged about them on Facebook.
"I have to brag on my team". My goal was to raise $5,500. I raised that from my gang, based just by sending out a text before night fall yesterday. I was really proud of them stepping up to the plate and thought maybe we could raise a little awareness and possibly a little more money.
Within 2 hours, I had enough money to send another load, and the donations are still coming. I originally suggested people donate online to an organization, but most wanted to send their checks to me. I think people like the idea of knowing EXACTLY where their money is going. I wrote the first check directly to Otis, the hay guy.
When so many donations came in, I called my contact at Lamar Dixon Expo Center. She is actually on the ground there, physically taking care of the livestock. I asked if the money was best spent on a second load of hay, or if she'd rather me do something else. She said they desperately need shavings, as all of them are stalled and a lot of them are starting to have foot problems from standing in the flood waters.
Jodie Kelly was "on it". "I have a great Sun Coast shavings contact, so I told her I'd be in touch with him about sending a tractor trailer load to her. She called me an angel and started to cry! These people have been through hell. Now there is a load of shavings on the way.
This was not my original plan, but I will continue to send what is needed, as the money continues to come.
And that local refuge that needed the help? They just arrived as JKD and into the loving arms of her "Team", making the local news.
How you can help - Jodie and Laurie Kelly are helping to manage coordination of needed items along with funds so those who want to help know that all finds are directly helping the Louisiana Flood animals.
Write Checks to
Alaqua Animal Refuge
and mail to
4311 Derby Lane
Destin, Fl 32541