#LivingLikeLolita Bathtub Challenge
$4,008 of $4,000 goal
To our ORCAsome sponsors:
Patricia de la Vega
New Hampshire Animal Rights League
to our extraORCAnary sponsor:
to our overWHALEming sponsor:
The Vegan Pod
and to all of our PODigious sponsors who have helped to make this event possible!
I'm Danielle, a 29-year old mom from New Zealand who is on a mission to bring worldwide attention to the suffering of Lolita. Lolita is a beautiful, intelligent, endangerd orca who was captured in 1970 and is still held in captivity at the Miami Seaquarium in terrible circumstances.
I would often see images of protesters carrying signs asking, "Could YOU live in a bathtub?" I was inspired by this message to do just that. On February 11th, I will be leaving my family to cross the ocean and spend 30 days in a bathtub outside the Seaquarium in Miami, Florida. When I arrive, I will be met by activists from Animal Activists Network, an animal rights organization based in Miami who regularly advocate for Lolita. They will be hosting me and supporting me every step of the way throughout my journey.
By embarking on this challenge, I will experience the same feelings of captivity, separation from my family, boredom and stress that Lolita endures every day. I don't believe anything like this has ever been done before and I'm hoping it will bring worldwide attention to Lolita's suffering. We are calling this event the #LivingLikeLolita bathtub challenge.
It will be incredibly difficult for me to be away from my family for such a long time, but I know that my son will someday understand and admire me for fighting for what I believe in in this very brave way!
We are hoping to raise sufficient funds to cover the cost of my flight to Miami and back, and other necessary expenses. If we come in under budget, any leftover funds will go directly into an account for Lolita's retirement.
Other: $2,000-$2,500 (Traveller's insurance, local transportation, bathtub/base, cell phone, misc.)
This event has already made the news in Miami and New Zealand. So many people have been encouraging and pledged their support! Please donate whatever you can---no amount is too small or too great---to help us make this historic event a reality for Lolita!
For more information visit the Facebook event page:
Or our website: www.LivingLikeLolita.com
#LivingLikeLolita News Coverage:
Hutt Woman to Spend Month in Miami Bathtub to Protest Whale in Captivity
Free-Lolita Activist Plans to Live in Bathtub Outside Seaquarium
for a Month
Kiwi mum to live in bathtub for a month to protest an orca's captivity
As the host group, AACTN is grateful to a number of other dedicated activists, each of whom came together to make this event a success. Thank you to everyone who donated, shared, provided food/prizes for the potluck, visited Danielle and who supported this event. Huge props and a heartfelt thanks go out to Cindy Seip, who agreed to open her home to Danielle and take on the task of transporting her to and from the Miami SeaPrison daily--with the tub in tow! A special thank you goes out to The Vegan Pod's Sylvia Grimaldi Gomez, for agreeing to provide all of Danielle's meals while she was at the MSQ. Thanks to Alicia Toral for her efforts to secure a bathtub; thanks also to Wendy King for her help with setting up our GoFundMe account and other admin assistance, and for staging our 'tricks-for-food' performances by Danielle aka Lolita! A big thank you, too, to Scuba Film Factory and Oleg Finodeyev, for his dedication in video-recording the entire event, day in and day out. In addition to organizing the popular LLL Potluck (thanks, Kyle Krakow, for securing the pavilion), our own AACTN team--Jeff, Belinda, Hilda, and Nadia--worked tirelessly for weeks and months to organize, promote and raise funds to finance the event, to purchase the plane ticket, MSQ passes, print leaflets, signs, banners, tee-shirts, buy the bed and bathtub--and spring for gallons of gas, water and insect repellent! It was a daunting and sometimes difficult effort, often unacknowledged, but so worth it for this beautiful orca named Lolita.
At the end of the day, we all need to remember that while each of us can go home to our families and move on with our lives, for Lolita, there is no such respite. Without question, the #LivingLikeLolita Bathtub Challenge was a success, but not one of us has even remotely experienced the isolation, loneliness or despair that this poor orca has been living with for over 45 years. In the wake of this event, Animal Activists Network hopes that all marine mammal activists will redouble their commitment to Lolita, and will continue to support our efforts to retiring her. Thank you all!
The day has finally arrived and I'm about to begin this mission for Lolita.
I'm so excited to get it under way but so scared to be going all this way without anyone and venturing into the unknown. My feelings however are nothing to how terrified Lolita must have felt when ripped from her freedom and family!" ~ Danielle
This week has not planned out how I expected. My dear grandma took a turn for the worse a few days ago and as I write this now, I am beside her bed and have been watching over her overnight. We both know she won't be here when I return home, but knowing she is proud of me and that I have her full support makes leaving a tiny bit easier. My beautiful boy turns 2 on Friday, which is also the last day I have with them all.
Today I will start to pack up my bags which will make this all so much more real. I am excited and if I'm honest, a bit nervous. I'm so pleased to see more publicity for this event and i should be on tv3 news any day now!
Looking forward to meeting you all very soon. ~Danielle