Okey’s Promise: Art for a Cause

I can’t tell you how excited I am about having BZTAT as my first guest blogger. She’s here to tell you all about something that’s furry impawtant to all of us – the connection between animal abuse and abuse of children and other family memebers. Take it away, BZTAT!



“Thanks Pumpkin for letting me share about a vital issue on your blog!

Many of us who are pet advocates do not need to be convinced that treating animals well is important and necessary. We already are convinced that animals deserve humane and caring treatment. There are some people, though, who say, “Yeah, yeah, yeah. Whatever. It is more important to spend our time on children’s concerns than it is to spend time on animals.”

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Of course it is important to take care of children and to eliminate child abuse. But to do so at the exclusion of caring for animals is a flawed strategy.

The truth is, when animals are suffering in society, children are too. When there is violence to animals, there is likely violence to children and others who may be defenseless. Where there is poverty, there is an abundance of unwanted pets due to animals not being spayed and neutered.

The issue of pet abuse and abandonment is deeply connected to the issue of child abuse and domestic violence. Both issues need to be addressed together, not one in isolation of each other. When we prioritize the needs of animals, we are prioritizing the needs of children and others who are vulnerable.

The links between animal abuse, child abuse and domestic violence have been known for many years, but the connection still remains unknown to most people. Simply telling people about the links is not making the kind of impact that is needed. After rescuing a small cat myself that I suspect was abused, I decided to do something different.

I created the Okey’s Promise: Art for a Cause project to raise awareness to the issue through public art.

The first piece, a mural funded by 85 “Okey’s Promise Keepers”, or backers through Kickstarter, was completed and hung on an exterior wall in the Canton, OH Arts District. I launched the second project on August 27, 2011 at the BlogPaws international pet bloggers’ conference. The new project is currently seeking funding through Kickstarter as well, running until September 26, 2011.

Anyone who pledges to the project becomes part of a select group called “Okey’s Promise Keepers” who make the project happen. Pledges big and small all count and make it possible to bring the issues out of the dark.

You can become an Okey’s Promise Keeper here. Or you can simply share in anyway that you would like – posting on Facebook, or Twitter or on your blog, etc. The Kickstarter page even has a widget and video that you can embed on your own site. Every person who shares with another has the power to move more and more people.

Thank YOU for helping get the message out!


Follow Okey’s Promise: Art for a Cause on Facebook!

Here’s an excellent video about Okey’s Promise.

Thank you, BZTAT for your work in helping to stop abuse. This is a furry impawtant topic in my household, not because any of us animals were abused, but because Mom grew up with a very abusive relative. She knows the pain and humiliation first hand. But she’s also proof that there’s hope for those who have been abused. There were others in her life that made her feel valued and respected and taught her how to find her self-respect and self-worth. She was able to put the abuse behind her and move on to have a good life. She’s learned that the cycle of abuse can be broken, and that if you make a conscious decision to honor others, both human and animal, and to treat them with dignity and respect, that the world can be a better place for all.

We’ve joined Okey’s Promise Keepers. Will you?