Positive activism means incorporating art, humor and creativity into our projects. Humor, in many cases, is the strongest appeal, and draws in college students much more effectively than depressing pictures and sad statistics.
Think of your favorite animal welfare organization… they LOVE to show us one-eyed kittens and sad, emaciated puppies. Guilt is a strong emotional appeal, but do we stick with the conventional methods, or do we indulge in the beautiful experiment of positive activism?
The Texas State University H.E.A.T. chapter’s “Spot’s Illustrated” and “Playtoy” animal shelter calendars are H.E.A.T.’s signature animal welfare projects, and they always leave the animals AND people feeling great.
All of the animals in the “Spot’s Illustrated” calendar were adopted or sent to a breed-specific rescue within the first three months of the calendar’s release.
Many college students move to apartments after freshman year, and getting a cat or dog is often at the top of their to-do list. H.E.A.T. created a funny way to promote the amazing shelter dogs rather than demonizing breeders and puppy mills.
How did we market the calendars? Easy, we used our classic H.E.A.T. networking to feature the student body presidents, star athletes, and most well-known and popular faces across campus posing with the shelter animals. These folks were great, and all of their friends were catalysts in promoting the calendars through various other organizations and cliques on campus. We helped shelter animals AND collaborated with various student organizations… SO H.E.A.T.ed!!!
Visit PAWS Shelter and Humane Society at PAWSSHELTER.ORG