Sloths have long been derided as lazy and stupid but I think we humans have a lot to learn from their from their energy-efficient lifestyle. The world is moving at an unsustainable pace. And so are we. In fact all this rushing around could be slowly killing us as well as the planet we live on. A rrecent scientific study revealed the need to for us to value sleep more. Without enough sleep, we increase our risk of a wide range of illnesses from diabetes to cancer.
So it's probably a good thing that the second annual International Sloth Day is just around the corner, on October 20th. A day for us to slow down and appreciated the way of the sloth.
Sloth Day is organized by the AIUNAU sloth foundation, which has a sanctuary in Colombia that rescues sloths that have been zapped by power lines, hit by cars or stolen for the illegal pet trade. Tinka Plese, who started the foundation, is pioneering work rehabilitating these cryptic animals and releasing them back into the wild.
I visited the sanctuary in March and was really impressed by the work they do. So I made this little video to help them promote their work. Almost all of the sloths in the video have now been successfully released back into the wild where they belong.
Saving sloths is expensive work and AIUNAU desperately need more funding to carry on rehabilitating these gentle creatures and educating other organizations in central and south America to do the same. So why not organize a slow fundraiser for AIUNAU this sloth day? You could give up coffee for the week, take a slow bike-ride to work and sleep-in on Saturday. Then donate the money you save to AIUNAU. It would be good for you, and the sloths.
Lucy Cooke's first book, 'A Little Book of Sloth', featuring cute pictures and stories about these gentle creatures is released in March 2013. A percentage of profits is going towards saving sloths. You can pre-order it here.