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Looking Forward to 2017

Posted by Harry Shubin on

Looking Forward

In our December Newsletter, we explained why we are limiting intakes, and how we are hoping to control our costs – so we can return to our open door policy – by gathering a crew of short-term fosters, and by organizing a coherent fundraising plan. 

(I’ll take two “Powerball *IS *My Retirement Plan” tickets, please)

We need someone to bring ideas to our Board of Directors and work with us to plan fundraising activities.  Even if you’re not someone who has non-profit fundraising experience, but are brimming with ideas and are willing to learn, please let us know.

©Rikki’s Refuge – some rights reserved

Fluffy suspected Whiskers was cheating at poker, but since the money was being donated to FFGW he hesitated to complain…


 Short term fosters receive cats as they come in, help us get them to the vet, and then to our adoption center inside of the Leesburg PetSmart when they’re ready (and/or give them a short break if they have been at the center for a while, or catch a cold).  If your Mew Year’s resolution was to give back to your community, we hope you’ll consider keeping a homeless cat warm, safe and with a full tummy for a short period of time, or focusing your fundraising genius on a worthy non-profit – us!

We’re not exactly sure why, but it seems that the thought of fostering might seem frightening…  perhaps you aren’t sure how to hold a cat?  You wouldn’t be as bad as SOME folks!

(Yes, that’s Kim Kardashian)


Or perhaps you’re afraid you aren’t able to bench press a cat?


Well, we haven’t had a 60 pounder in… well, we’ve never had one!  (The cat on the left is photoshopped, the one on the right, apparently not.)

Perhaps you don’t think you’re organized enough to assist?

Or maybe you’re afraid that you’ll bring them all home?


It couldn’t be that our purrfectly normal and cheerful volunteers frighten you, could it?

Nah, that couldn’t  be it.

It must be that you just don’t realize how much we really need you!

And we do need, you, very very much.  As we adapt to the opportunity to save more cats through our “storefront” inside the Leesburg PetSmart, we have to step up our game – by controlling costs through greater use of fosters rather than boarding at our partner vets, and by more effective fundraising.



Ok, maybe not lied, exactly... but we made it less than 2 weeks into the new year when our resolve to only intake center-ready cats gave out. 

The call came in from a family who had found a half-frozen cat... missing an ear.  He had been outside on the coldest weekend of the winter.  He was friendly, they were allergic, and couldn't we help?

We've already told you that saying "no" isn't our preferred way to operate.

And he just seemed so defeated...

The family that took him in named him Van Gogh - the missing ear, of course - and when we got him to the vet, we found that he had a chip and were able to contact his owner... who told us that he had been abused before she adopted him, that she was leaving the country and had given him to her brother who didn't want him and had given him to someone else, who was mean to him, and apparently let him out.  We were only too happy to keep him, even if it meant breaking our rule.  

Van Gogh after some love in a foster home:

We hear he's a pinball wizard!

But the most amazing part of Van Gogh's story came when we got his records from his original person's vet.  Van Gogh's name?  It was Van Gogh.

And so, it's clear that we truly need your help to return to our old ways of helping cats that really, really need us.

Please, if you can foster, even for a few days, reply to the newsletter and let us know.  If you can’t foster, please download and post our foster flyer.  And if you have fundraising experience, or know someone who does, please contact us so that as we move into 2017, we can build a strong program and continue our mission to save cats in our community.  The kitties and we thank you!

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