As we reflect on the past year at Purrfect Cat Rescue, we must first give our thanks for those who supported us, either with donations or by adopting one of our cats or kittens. Our collective dedication to finding homes for otherwise unwanted cats means nothing without the people willing to open their homes to them.
2012 was a busy year for us, fostering over 200 cats, and adopting over 50 of them in a single weekend during Maddie’s Pet Adoptathon in June. Additionally, dozens upon dozens of people purchased low-cost spay and neuter vouchers so they can assist us—and the whole community—in lowering the number of free-roaming cats. Ultimately this makes our job easier, even though it’s sometimes hard to measure that difference given the number of cats that come into our program each year.
We were busy as well with our new location at Newpark Mall. The store, long empty, needed a good deal of work to function and feel like our own spot, and it has come a long way, but we’re not done yet. In 2013, we want to expand our spay/neuter program by stocking the store with humane cat traps to rent to the many people stopping by to ask about TNR (trap, neuter, return). In addition, we hope to simplify the process of obtaining the vouchers and potentially recruit volunteers to help members of the public new to TNR programs.
Another goal is to increase our group of foster homes to the degree that the majority of them will be caring for only one litter at a time. This will help reduce the spread of kitten-hood illness between litters making it easier for us to have healthy, young kittens available for showcase and adoption. It will also make it possible for our long-term, cat-weary foster homes to slow down enough to take care of not only kittens, but themselves as well. In order to address this significant shortage of foster homes, we plan to launch a “one litter a year” foster program for those interested in helping but unable to commit to the long-term rigors of year round foster care.
Another problem area is the harder-to-adopt adult and special needs cats that often remain in foster homes for years. An effective tool to combating this is a community outreach program—quite simply, a group of volunteers whose sole job would be to occasionally send out e-mails to everyone they know describing the plight of the cat in question. We tried a small-scale version of this with June, a sweet, playful Siamese with a chronic urinary tract issue, and in just over a week a home was found for her.
This is fairly ambitious, but those of us who choose this sort of work fall into the category of “Fools Rush in Where Angels Fear to Tread.” Still, in order to make any of this happen—and in fact, in order to guarantee that Purrfect Cat Rescue continues at all—we need a great deal more volunteers in these specific areas. Our core membership has grown much smaller and at a certain point it will no longer be feasible or even possible to run this program with a handful of people taking on all the duties.
At the end of the year, non-profits usually remind people that their donations are tax-deductible and then make one more plea for money, but we’re not going to do that. Our big holiday wish this year is to see our group continue beyond 2013, and that is far more dependent on capable, passionate people than on cash. If you or anyone you know is interested in working with a non-profit such as ours, please stop by our store on the upper level of Newpark Mall.
One final request, a much simpler one: the foster homes of PCR are always happy to hear about and see how our former charges are doing in their new homes. If you have any photos to share, please e-mail them to firstname.lastname@example.org
Seasons Greeting and Happy Holidays,
Everyone at Purrfect Cat Rescue
Suzanne, one of last years most charming cats (I fostered her so some would say I’m biased about that, but I think they’re wrong—she had real personality).