It all started just over 9 years ago. Since I was about 10 I had been wanting to volunteer at the SPCA. My grandma would sometimes take me there when I went to visit her and we would go and look at all the kittens and puppies we wanted to adopt. I remember telling her that 1. She should adopt the little grey kitten because it looked like her and had the same hair colour even! 2. That when I was old enough (18 years old) I would go back there and I would be a person who works there. (Actually it started even longer ago than that as I have loved animals from a young age and we have always had dogs in our family.)
Anyway, skip forward 8 years and I have just finished my last year at high school. I got it into my mind that now would be the perfect time to try to find some way of working with animals while I was at university, as well as having something to do over my summer holiday. I was visiting my grandma one Sunday afternoon and she reminded me how we used to go and visit the kittens at the SPCA. This brought up probably because we were talking about the latest crazy antics of my cat Luna(tic). I remembered how all those years ago I had wanted to work at the SPCA and had one of those “Hey-I’m-18-now-so-I-can-do-that” moments.
When I got home I looked up the Canterbury SPCA website and checked out their volunteer page. I was overjoyed to see that they were looking for Dog Attendants to work on the weekends. I thought to myself that it would be a perfect to fit in with university and my church work, so I updated my CV and emailed it with my cover letter the same day. The called me back later that week to say they would like for me to come in for an interview, but that I sounded like such a nice, energetic young person that it really was a formality.
Fast track 7 months later and I was at the end of my volunteering period. I had enjoyed every minute of what I did at the SPCA. Yes, even the washing up, and laundry. As I was working alongside one of the actual staff members I learnt a lot about animals and taught about what goes on at the SPCA and what they do to help animals in need. All of this set me off onto me trying to do my own part in helping animals.
Around the same time of starting at the SPCA I was also introduced to LUSH cosmetics by an old school friend who I was attending university with. After our psychology labs on a Tuesday we would hit Northlands Mall just to go into LUSH to smell all the gorgeous hings. This was the start of myself being aware of using cruelty-free beauty products and what sparked something in me to start making myself more aware of the makeup I was buying and using. Fast rack another 13 months to right now and I my eyes now even more open to the products I use and have been using. I was actually amazed to find out that already half of the products I was using in the past were actually cruelty-free and the rest only claimed they were.
One of the main things I have found hard in this is the research. Becoming cruelty-free takes a lot of time, effort and research. I’m not perfect and have definitely mucked up a few times (even recently) when doing my research. It really helps having friends who know what to look out for when in comes to cruelty-free beauty and who are also on the journey with you. Like I said in one of my instagram posts yesterday, becoming cruelty-free really is a never-ending journey! Beauty companies and makeup is being redefined everyday and it means everything is changing all the time. It’s also great to be able to refer back to Cruelty-Free New Zealand beauty companies like She Lives Cruelty Free, Bossy Cosmetics and Complexions NZ to buy at the products they sell as you can be sure that they have done their research and it makes your journey just that tad bit easier.
I will be posting another update next week to show you how my cruelty-free makeup collection is coming along and tell you about a couple of times where I didn’t do my research properly before buying a product. If you have any questions or comment you know where to ask!