by guest-blogger, Beth Begany
The annual Walk for Farm Animals is one of Farm Sanctuary's most important outreach events each year. In addition to educating people about the realities of factory farming, the Walk helps raise money that supports our farm animal protection work, literally saving innocent lives with each dollar raised. Over the years, the Walk has helped to underwrite our mission.
But, honestly, this year we were a little nervous. The economy tanked, people were out of work. We just didn't know if our supporters would be able to be as generous with us as they always have been in the past.
Well, it's my absolute pleasure to be able to report that the Walk raised more money than any previous Walk, and we also had many more people participating.
We raised in excess of $330,000 (gross income), and more than 3600 people took to the streets to send an incredibly powerful message of hope for farm animals.
Every single person who participated — whether by organizing a Walk, taking part in a local Walk or donating to the Walk — has helped us make a difference in the lives of farm animals. And every dollar raised counts equally to support the work we do. No donation is ever too small or too big (hint, hint).
But, we would be remiss if we didn't give a special shout out to the Walks that raised the most money. So, without further ado, here are the top-10 Walks of 2009:
New York City $79,644
San Francisco $12,711
South Florida $9,000
Santa Monica/LA $8,774
Pretty impressive, right?
And, while we're on the subject of top performers, a big Farm Sanctuary huzzah to some really extraordinary supporters – our top fundraisers. Carolyn Benson, Kelly Cooney, Dave Cohen, Jamie Cohen and Gretchen Primack collectively garnered more than $10,000 for Farm Sanctuary. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for this amazing achievement!
Top fundraisers Jamie and Kelly are also among our truly awesome pool of 87 local activists who organized 67 Walks (plus one “Walkless” Walk). We can't say enough about this year’s coordinators who gave so freely of themselves to make each Walk an unmitigated success.
So, as the curtain closes on the 2009 Walk and we look forward the coming year, all of us at Farm Sanctuary are truly grateful for all your support and hard work, and for all the generous donations that will help keep us on our path to a compassionate world.
Beth Begany was honored to be the National Coordinator for Farm Sanctuary’s record-breaking 2009 Walk for Farm Animals.