“If one person can make a difference in the world, I believe we can all live in better place,” Leilah du Plessis, 13, said. Du Plessis decided to join local charity organisation Buckaroo Project and assist them in going to local townships and sterilising dogs. “I have always loved animals from a young age. I believe animals deserve the same love and treatment from human beings that they give to us,” she said.
After joining fine art photographer Marlene Neumann, and the rest of Buckaroo Project, Du Plessis decided to encourage her school mates and teachers at Merrifield Preparatory School and College into donating food to the project. The Buckaroo Project was initiated five years ago to assist stray township dogs.
“I was approached by Du Plessis last month, asking when are going out to the township to
dip and sterilise the dogs. To my surprise, she showed up and helped us dip, feed and deworm 200 dogs,” Neumann said.
Neumann said she got an invitation to talk about the project at Merrifield and was introduced by Du Plessis, who shared her involvement with her teachers and classmates.
Du Plessis described her first experience in a township as chaotic and overwhelming.
“I didn’t know what to expect, because I have never done such a thing. Being there and seeing the condition of the dogs did make me sad. To see them being mistreated inspired
me to want do more,” she said.
“If it was up to me, I would help every animal that is in need. I have always wanted to work with every animal species.”
Neumann said every time Buckaroo goes out to the township, they have to carry more 450kg of food to feed the dogs. The food we have received from Leilah and Merrifield is going to make a huge difference.
“It is amazing to have someone as young as Leilah involved, it surely shows that there is hope in our future,” Neumann said.