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Local woman raises awareness about bear bile farming

Updated: Sunday, October 13 2013, 09:34 PM CDT
Written by: Ewa Roman

Cumberland County resident Kerri Rodley is from Australia, but lives in Hampden Township.

She's doing something we can all relate to; standing up for what she believes in and it all started with a stuffed bear.

"This fellow is actually called z yu, which is Chinese for Freedom and I bought him as my mascot when I started fundraising," said Rodley. 

She is running in ING NYC Marathon to help end bear bile farming.

He'll be strapped on to her back during the New York City Marathon November 3rd.  "He's ready, because he doesn't actually have to do anything ha ha ha!" said Kerri about her stuffed bear.

With each stride, Kerri hopes to raise $5,000 to end bear bile farming.

According to Animals Asia, a group devoted to ending bear bile farming, more than 10,000, mainly moon bears and some sun and brown bears, are kept on bile farms in China and Vietnam.

They are milked for their bile, which is used in traditional medicine.
The process is very painful and can cause infection.
The bears are kept in tiny cages. Some caged for 30 years before their rescue.
At a rescue sanctuary in China, where Kerri raised $13,000 last year, she came face to face with a rescued bear.

"One particular bear called Peanut. I was sitting there at the cage and he came up to me, a total stranger, just came up to the cage and sat down just starred at me like a teddy bear and it was absolutely gorgeous and very moving," said Kerri.

Kerri ended up sponsoring Peanut.

"It was fantastic. Brought us to sort of tears," said Kerri.

Hoping her very first marathon will help move more bears to safety.

"I'm sure there will be a bit of walking in there, but as long as I finish it in one piece, that is all I'm going to think about," said Kerri.

Click here to help and learn more about bear bile farming :!/Help.Rescue.The.Bears
Local woman raises awareness about bear bile farming

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