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In November 2017 I walked along “The Strand” when I passed a stand by “DOTS” (which stands for Dogs on the Streets) collecting donations for the dogs of homeless people in London. Being a dog owner myself I stopped, had a chat with the volunteers and donated some money. Ever since that meeting I have been following DOTS on Social Media and at the same time thinking about a way to support their work with more than just a plain donation. So in autumn this year, the plan was ready.

Advent Calendars that support DOTS (Dogs on the Streets)

How about offering Advent Calendars with hand-picked London themed content? How about donating a certain amount of money from each calendar sold to DOTS? The idea for the Totally-London Advent Calendars was born. There are three different calendars to choose from and 10% of the sales price of each calendar will be forwarded to DOTS. The calendars are on sale until the 1st of November and can be ordered here.

To give you all the chance to learn more about DOTS and their work, I invited their founder, Michelle Clark, for an interview. Michelle is the woman behind DOTS. She founded the charity back in 2017 and was just recently awarded with the “Special Recognition 2018 Award“, an Animal Hero Award by “The Mirror”. Enjoy finding out more about her, why a dog named Poppy is so important and what kind of services DOTS offer exactly. The answers by Michelle are written in italics.

Interview with Michelle Clark – founder of DOTS

Michelle, please tell us more about yourself! Who are you? Founding director of “Dogs on the Streets” 

Where in London do you live? North London

What do you like about your area? Community, easy access to all parts of London 

What do you like about living in London? Having everything you need close to you, eateries, community, theatres, night life 

Tell us more about your charity DOTS (Dogs on the streets)

What does DOTS stand for? Dogs on the Streets 

Which services and support does DOTS offer? We provide free accessible vet care, nutricious food, collars, leads & all other essentials plus dog grooming to the homeless community that live on the streets with pet dogs 

How does the sign-up process work? Can homeless people just show up? Yes, homeless people can just turn up at one of our operating stations we have on set daytimes and locations around London 

How many dogs are currently registered with DOTS? Over 300

When did you start DOTS and why? Started in March 2017 after helping a street dog that came to live with me as her homeless daddy became poorly. 

What was/is the motivation behind DOTS? Realising the dogs and their owners had no easily accessable service to go to for everthing they need and can call us 24/7 should they need

How do you fund the expenses? We receive donations from our wonderful supporters/public 

Do you receive payments by the state? No

Who works in your team? We have a team of vets/vet nurses/groomers/frontline operative volunteers 

Do you have plans to expand into other cities? Yes, we already cover Kent, Bournemouth, Milton Keynes, Oxford and 2 more stations opening soon 

Why is orange the DOTS colour? It’s bright, stands out and is a joyful colour 

Where do you see DOTS in 5 years? Supporting the whole of the UK 

The service we provide ensures all the dogs can receive regular health checks, be on a stable nutricious diet and the owners know we are there for them 24/7. We help, support and represent them into housing via the services and most importantly being a friend and a voice for them.  

How can my readers support your work? Awareness of our service 

What’s your Christmas wish(es)? That every homeless person both with and without dogs has a warm safe place to live 

Michelle Clark on London

What would you recommend for a first-time visitor in London to see/visit? Buckingham Palace

3 words to describe London: Fun, Bright, Fast 

Where do you go for a good breakfast? Cafe Rouge 

The craziest food you ever had in London is? I’m not very adventerous with food but there is many crazy places to eat 

The best museum in London is…? Science Museum

Some fun stuff about Michelle, the founder of DOTS

Which is your favourite ice-cream flavour? Has to be chocolate

Gin and Tonic or Pimm’s? Pimm’s

What was your weirdest experience ever while using the tube? Don’t use the tube, I drive everywhere 

DOTS on Social Media

To stay up to date with DOTS, learn more about Michelle’s team and their plans for the future, visit the DOTS homepage or follow them on Facebook via @dotslondon, Instagram via @dotslondon or Twitter via @dotslondon. They don’t receive any payments by the government and therefore depend on donations. If you want to contribute, you will find all you need to know on their homepage.

Thank you, Michelle for giving some insights into the services of DOTS. Let’s support Michelle’s work together!

* for this post and the tagging of person, brand, event or locations I did not receive any payment, discount or any other advantages. However, by declaring this post as “advertisement not sponsored” I meet the new legal requirements in German law.

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