Trunks of Love

…by Debbie Tuma

In an effort to help preserve animal species around the globe, the third annual Trunks of Love Gala was held in August at Dopo La Spiaggia Restaurant in East Hampton. It raised funds for Veterinarians International, a non-profit organization, whose mission is “to enhance the health of humans, animals, and the environment through the use of sound veterinary care and expertise.”

This group partners with like-minded groups around the world to ensure their animals receive the veterinary care they desperately need. Veterinarians International provides vaccines, training programs in animal health, food production, nutrition, husbandry, and disease control, in areas where it is needed to improve the conditions in their communities.

This East Hampton event was hosted by Katie Cleary of “World Animal News,” Zara Beard, and Emmy nominated actor Dwayne Hill. The charity honored Dr. Jane Goodall, noted primatologist, conservationist, and humanitarian, who was also seen in the Hamptons during the screening of her movie at the Hamptons International Film Festival. They also honored Cornelia Guest, actress, animal rights activist, founder of Artemis Farm Rescue, and creator of a line of cruelty-free handbags and Penni Ludwig, who funded two of the organization’s mobile elephant clinics, for critical veterinary care in Surin, Thailand.

At this party celebration, attended by 175 guests, two new veterinary programs were introduced, “Healthy Pets” in Chile and Guatemala, providing vet care to low-income families; and “Women, Goats and Peace,” in Kenya, offering vet care to the goats and donkeys of 265 families living in arid, impoverished landscapes.

The evening also featured an amazing exhibit by National Geographic Explorer Asher Jay; live birds of prey from the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center in Hampton Bays; and music by Dan Bailey Tribe, who dressed in tribal costumes, and Ralph Hafmeister. Special guests were model Missy Hargraves, Jane Gill of the Wildlife Rescue Center, Bruce Weber and Nan Bush, Stewart Shining, Pamela Lubell, and James Hammond.

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