A Vegan Chat With Prue Barber from Mission Pawsible
Where do we start with someone like Prue Barber?
A former graphic designer by trade, Prue was inspired and drawn to help with the plight of vulnerable and homeless street dogs through her own travels. She now runs Mission Pawsible, a charity (Australian Approved) devoted to helping, educating and facilitating rescue efforts by groups and individuals in Bali, Indonesia.
We have followed the Mission Pawsible journey for some time now and have seen the results of the incredible work they do in Bali. So when Prue agreed to take time out from her busy and incredibly important schedule to chat, we were thrilled.
(be sure to go and watch the videos linked)
Tell us a little about you and why you do what you do?
My professional paying job is in Graphic Design. I have worked in the corporate sector for over 15 years and I’ve been able to work remotely for the past 10 years (apparently it is now called a digital nomad!;) ). So as I have been travelling through Southeast Asia and India I was able to work online and travel which exposed me to the stray animal situation in developing countries. I was inspired by many people through this journey and, using my skill as a graphic designer/advertising creative. I was able to hone my skills to support the rescued animals. Why do I help them? Why not is always my answer. Anyone can rescue and Mission Paws’ible was created to support others (no matter where you are from or what you do). We guide people through the process. No one is certified to be an ‘animal rescuer’. Anyone can do it and I want to educate and activate people here in Bali and beyond via social media, advertising, marketing and so much more!
Tell us about the first rescue you ever did and how this influenced what MP is today?
My journey through rescue hasn’t been easy. The animals are the easy part, the people are the struggle. I was volunteering for a local rescue group at the time of my first ‘rescue’ and that would be Stevie Wonder, who 4 years after his rescue, I adopted (that’s another story altogether). He was in the gutter of a busy road where he was panting, facing the speeding traffic without flinching. I thought it was odd so we stopped and realised he had one eye missing and the other was hugely infected. I called the team who I was volunteering for and they came and collected him. Sadly he lost his other eye as the infection was terrible and causing issues with his sinus’.
My first rescue as Mission Pawsible was Putih. You can read his story here (feel free to take his photos): https://missionpawsible.org/project/putih/
Putih is really the turning point in my thinking too. He taught me how to work with others (his adoptive family) to save him without pulling him out of his ‘home’ and territory.
Not all dogs need to be ‘rescued’. They too have feelings and are most happy in their home and environment (if the environment is safe of course). Putih was the first time I had to find another solution than just removing him 1) I don’t have a shelter 2) I had little funding 3) I wasn’t sure how to rehome him. So keeping him in his space was the best option and thankfully, to this day, Putih is so healthy, happy and loved.
Do you have a particular story that still deeply moves you?