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Shining World Compassion Award: For the Love of Parrots: Canada’s World Parrot Refuge - P3/3    
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Everywhere in the world, we can observe and be touched by acts of kindness. People from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures extend themselves beyond the call of duty to help others unconditionally. Through their noble deeds, humanity as a whole is elevated.

To commend virtuous actions and encourage more people to be inspired by their examples, Supreme Master Ching Hai has lovingly created a series of awards, including the Shining World Leadership Award, Shining World Compassion Award, Shining World Hero and Heroine Awards, Shining World Honesty Award, Shining World Protection Award, Shining World Intelligence Award, and Shining World Inventor Award, to recognize some of the most exemplary, generous, caring, and courageous people who walk amongst us. Today, we present the concluding episode of our visit to the World Parrot Refuge.

This bird sanctuary, operated by the “For the Love Of Parrots Refuge Society” in Coombs, British Columbia, Canada, provides a “Home for Life” for over 800 parrots from more than 50 species who have been abused or had a caregiver who could no longer look after them.

The Refuge’s environment is designed to replicate, to the extent possible, the birds` natural habitat. Most of the inhabitants are free to fly and forage for food in the safety of the 2,100 plus square meters of heated indoor free-flight aviaries. Wendy Huntbatch, the non-profit organization’s co-founder and president, explains how running such a facility is a very challenging job.

It’s my life. The birds are my life. I start in the morning at 7 o’clock and it’s just constant. There’s things to do, there’s staff to look after. I’m feeding the special needs birds. And then I have all the medications to do. One bird got an injury on her wing so we had to fix that. There’s always something when you’ve got 800 plus birds. I do the evening feed. Then the last thing I do is I go to the grocery store to pick up the vegetables and fruit for the next day. And I usually get home by quarter to nine at night. And I do this seven days a week. And it doesn’t seem like a chore to me because I love every minute of it. Who in the world gets to do what they love every day of their life?

One of the many reasons Ms. Huntbatch and the Refuge’s staff and volunteers enjoy caring for the parrots so much is that the birds are so clever.

Parrots are highly intelligent. You can tell when you talk to them. They also do telepathy. And I can do telepathy with many of them. But you do know that when you’re with them, that they know, they understand. For instance, if one of them gets a hurt toe, they don’t just stand there and be hurt or be bleeding. If they can get to one of us, they’ll come and go like, “I’m hurt.” So they’ll show you the bad toe or if they’ve got a wing (problem), they’ll show you like, “I’m bleeding here.” So they come and seek you out. Now that’s intelligence.

They find us and then we’ll fix it. And then they, of course, say the inevitable, “I love you.” Because we always say that to them. We say, “I love you.” And they always say, “I love you.” So they do know. They do completely understand.

The World Parrot Refuge never turns away a parrot, and will even accept birds with special needs, such as Nelson, Minka, and Caesar.

Although in this area there’re a lot of cages, you’ll see that the doors are open. These birds are mostly special needs in here. Now Nelson, he’s known to have been in this country for 42 years, but he was captured in the wild. So heaven knows how old he really is. But he gets around and he shuffles around but he’s got rheumatoid arthritis.

This little bird in front of us here is Minka. Minka came in featherless. So you can see there’s progress being made there. African Greys get very, very upset very easily when they’re moved, but I don’t know how many times Minka had been moved before we got her, but she’s just doing phenomenally well.

This is Caesar. Caesar is blind. One eye is blinded from trauma. He was abused. When he came in, he was so thin. I didn’t know how he could be alive. And he was in a cage with another bird. And the other bird was much younger and much stronger and of course ate all the food. Unfortunately the food was the snack food covered in salt that people eat. And it was just dreadful. He had next to no feathers.

I’m doing fine. How are you doing?

And he eats really well now. He’s put on a lot of weight. And he’s got lovely feathers, don’t you?

For their loving care of these vulnerable birds, Supreme Master Ching Hai honored the World Parrot Refuge with the Shining World Compassion Award. Our Association member presented Wendy Huntbatch with the beautiful crystal heart shaped Award plaque.

This is incredible. This is just, oh it’s just beautiful. Oh!

Supreme Master Ching Hai also donated CAD$20,000 to the Refuge for their noble cause.

Thank you so much. Thank you to everyone. And thank you to Supreme Master Ching Hai. This is incredible. CAD$20,000 will help to save a lot of lives and it’s very, very important. Thank you. Thank you.

Supreme Master Ching Hai also sent Ms. Huntbatch a warm letter of appreciation, the following of which is an excerpt.

Dear Ms. Huntbatch, It is with much admiration and gratitude that we present to the World Parrot Refuge the “Shining World Compassion Award.” This Award is presented in recognition of your great success in providing a loving and caring home for many Parrots and for your selfless spirit of service to our intelligent feathered co-inhabitants creating a kinder and more humane future.

Thank you World Parrot Refuge for bringing happiness and security to so many birds and for being a noble example of benevolent unconditional love. For passionately striving to create an outstanding sanctuary of safety, for showing the godsend these birds are, and for being a dedicated and noble role model, we hereby applaud and celebrate the compassionate deeds of the World Parrot Refuge with special thanks to the President, Ms. Wendy Huntbatch and the devoted staff and volunteers. With Great Honour, Love & Blessings, Supreme Master Ching Hai.

Thank you, thank you so much. In response, Ms. Huntbatch has this touching message for Supreme Master Ching Hai.

When the letter came and I opened the letter and I read it, I couldn’t believe it. I cried and I cried. And I read it again and I cried some more. I could not believe that someone could see all this in what we do. Every day we do what we do because we want to make the birds have a better life. We want to give them a more normal life. We want them to be happy, to be parrots.

When I read the letter and saw the words that you’d put in there, it just was the most moving, most emotional thing that has ever happened to me. I didn’t even think anybody was watching what we do. It costs CAD$400,000 a year to keep this place going. And when your (donation) came, it was like a gift from God. It really helped us through a very bad time. But it was the letter, the words in the letter that were forever burned into my soul. It just, it, I can’t tell you how much. Thank you. It was wonderful.

Hearing that the Refuge is undergoing challenging times, with all love and respect and gratitude for what they do for the precious beings of the planet, Supreme Master Ching Hai is offering an additional CAD$30,000 to help out the World Parrot Refuge.

I had never considered myself to be in a position to be worthy of such an award. I do for these birds what I do because I just want the world to be a better place, happier. The world cannot manage if one level of living being disappears. At the rate the parrots are being robbed out of the wild, most of them are critically endangered at this moment. Some three years ago became extinct. This is not a way that life should go. So I do it, and have been doing it, and will continue to do it for this reason. To be recognized by someone like you is the most overwhelming experience a human could ever have. Thank you so much.

The World Parrot Refuge was gifted with a number of Supreme Master Ching Hai’s books, including “The Love of Centuries” and the #1 international best sellers, “The Birds In My Life,” “The Dogs In My Life” and “The Noble Wilds” as well as DVDs such as “The King & Co.” At the Award presentation ceremony, Wendy Huntbatch took the opportunity to acknowledge all those who work at the Refuge.

Although this was started by my husband and myself, it has been with the help of thousands of people that we’ve managed to pull it off as far as we have. The staff work for next to nothing, but they work with their hearts. Without them we couldn’t be where we are. We have volunteers that come in and do things for these birds. Without them we couldn’t be where we are. Without us, these birds would have no home.

Ms. Huntbatch has a sincere wish for the future.

There are more parrots coming in daily, literally daily. This morning at 6 o’clock I looked at my computer, “Would you take my two Amazon (parrots)? Would you take my Moluccan Cockatoo?” Six o’clock, Sunday morning. So this is a never ending problem. We have to work at changing people’s minds about buying parrots for pets so that we can eventually catch up with those that do live to be 75 needing a home for life. We do have to work at this for a very long time, but hopefully, if the supply stops, we eventually will be able to say “We’ve closed the doors, because you don’t need us anymore.” (Yes!)

We are deeply grateful, Wendy Huntbatch and all volunteers and staff at the World Parrot Refuge for your love, generosity, and heartfelt kindness in providing a forever loving home for all the birds under your care. You are an inspiration and a beacon of light in our world. We wish you every success in all your compassionate endeavors, and may your spirits be lifted to ever greater heights.

For more details on the World Parrot Refuge, please visit www.WorldParrotRefuge.org

Benevolent viewers, thank you for joining us today for our program. Enlightening Entertainment is coming up next, after Noteworthy News, here on Supreme Master Television. May the light and love of Heaven always shine brightly upon all beings.
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