Supporter Spotlight: Jeanie Kilgour
Jeanie Kilgour is a marine enthusiast, avid diver and longtime World Animal Protection supporter. Find out why animal protection is important to her.
Why did you decide to start giving?
I so admired people who worked directly to protect my fellow inhabitants of our earth; I do not think I could personally witness so much suffering. But I knew I could help reduce the suffering by donating and supporting those special people in the field. Even as a little girl, I realized that I needed to "put my money where my mouth is" if I were to be taken seriously – and, as I grew older, I knew that I needed to put my money where my heart was if I were to live contentedly with myself.
Tell us about an animal you love.
I have been a Samoyed mom for over 45 years. My love of the breed lead me to study their ancestor, the wolf. I am very passionate about these beautiful, intelligent, misunderstood creatures. This led to an interest in other wildlife - and an interest in other species just keep on mushrooming from there.
How has your experience with marine life impacted your interest in animal welfare?
I learned to scuba dive in 1993. My husband and I take 2 - 3 dive trips each year - usually in the Western Pacific. The variety of species of colorful critters - large and small - is absolutely amazing. Scuba has given me the opportunity to really, really look at a small slice of underwater life and see the interactions, - the camouflage, the hunting, the mating rituals, the algae farming, the egg-laying - as individuals and species survive in a world so different than mine. I have had over 1,700 dives and still can honestly say that each dive brings something new for me to think about!
Do you have a specific campaign you’re most passionate about?
It would be difficult to me to single out a specific campaign, except for shark-finning which I believe to be the most inhumane act of man today. Sharks are such graceful creatures, yanked from their homes, hacked apart, then thrown back to suffocate - all for a tasteless substance that once denoted wealth! All the campaigns are attempting to end suffering of innocent animals - often put in harm's way because of man's caprice. Any animal that is suffering tears at my heart, so I support them all.
What message would you give to others about becoming supporters?
Supporting World Animal Protection in their efforts to make this world a kinder place for all the species who share it, makes me feel like I am facing my responsibility as a member of the species who has the most impact on every living thing. To be comfortable with my life in this world, I have to face up to my duty to protect life for others.