For one of my five picture stories I decided to pursue a story I came across on Facebook that is local to where I live in Kent. A family with a rescue dog have recently run into some problems as their dog has become extremely unwell, having seizures and becoming very confused due to medical problems caused by events from before they rescued the giant English Bull Mastiff named Flo. The Hanson family, headed by mother Melissa Hanson, took their dog to the vets and were told that Flo would need to have a vital, but very expensive, MRI scan to determine the cause and subsequently the treatment for her and would also require lots of medication. The Hanson’s couldn’t afford the MRI and a lot of the medication but desperately wanted to help their beloved family pet so they set about organising fundraising events and a go fund me page to help raise money for Flo and for the PDSA, which is a vet charity that has been very helpful, supportive and affordable to the Hanson’s in Flo’s time of need. They named their efforts ‘Saving Flo’. They had previously held a charity dog walk fundraiser and scheduled a church hall family activity fundraiser at a date that coincided with a date that I would be available.
On Saturday 4th of February between the hours of 10am and 1pm Melissa Hanson and her family held a charity fundraiser for Flo at the Emmanuel Baptist Church hall. Activities at the event included an arts and crafts table, face paint, sales stools of homemade and popular gift and a raffle. Close friends and family helped organise and attend the event. I messaged Melissa, who gave me permission to come and photograph the event.
I had been told that Flo would be coming to the event but due to unforeseen circumstances she was not able to attend. Although I would’ve liked to photograph the dog, the main focus of this picture story is to depict a family and community coming together to help and support one another.
The fundraiser raised around £300 to go towards the MRI and PDSA.
Since then, the Hanson’s are very close to their goal and Flo has been responding well to her medication, acting much more like herself and feeling better.