“WE ARE IN TROUBLE (or should I say the 700 dogs in our care are in trouble) – and it’s not something that a few thousand pounds will solve sadly.
I have been absent for a few weeks, one reason because I have been sick and another because I’m so low about the future of our dogs. Burying my head in the sand and hoping it will go away is not going to save their lives, so I have to make the appeal of a lifetime.
Without going into too much detail, we only have one shelter now where the dogs lives are completely enriched. They get walks and lots of social stimulation daily.We are so fortunate to have amazing staff there and we don’t need to worry about it. Trust me, good staff are very hard to find. There are around 300 dogs there. Nevertheless in an open shelter you can’t keep adding new dogs and so we don’t. The dogs have established packs and new arrivals upsets the balance. It’s unsafe to disturb that.
This does mean that last month we stopped taking any dogs at all in to any of our shelters. Coming towards winter, that decision will just have huge implications for hundreds of dogs on the streets. It’s not one we took lightly and indeed it was my suggestion and not an easy one.
We thought we had an answer to our worries 6 months ago and we were about to get a private loan. We identified a new shelter and had wonderful staff ready to go. We were set to move our dogs to a place where they could thrive. The loan had an excellent guarantor and nothing could go wrong, but then it did. At the eleventh hour (after months of planning and solicitor fees) the lady withdrew. This means we have no winter planning in place for 700 dogs, because this was their new home. Hence my depression and the immediate halt to taking in any new dogs. It’s been extremely distressing, just as winter is approaching. We even took in another 100 dogs in the last 6 months in a make do shelter, on the back of them having this winter shelter. The shelter there is not prepared for -30 degrees and snow. Even today the shelter manager there is pleading for thousands of euros to buy a unit for the young and old who are already freezing.
We have however been thrown a lifeline today, with an option of paying in installments for the said shelter. This place by the way is amazing and we have two wonderful people ready to move in. It is a place where we can also, for the first time, generate an income, through a clinic area. Besides needing big donations, that will enable us to ask for help less in the future, we are asking all supporters to please donate £15.
We have worked so hard for 5 years. Some of our dogs will never get homes. If we can get this new shelter they will still have a fulfilling and enriched life, They will get so much great care and socialization.
We need to raise at least £63,000 for the deposit and first part of the renovations very quickly, but know this is a huge ask. After that we need a further £22,000 for the remaining building work. Can we get anywhere near? This means the difference to what future lies ahead for hundreds of dogs. We were there when they needed us. If they had voices they would say “Where are you now? You took us off the streets and now what?” We need to be able to answer “Here we are – we are still here for you!”
Now to you. Can you help us please, no matter how small? This isn’t a time where things will get better if we can bring in a few thousand sadly, because without this shelter we will be back month after month after month asking for a few thousand more because we aren’t solving the underlying problems that are resulting in the huge vet bills. This is a literal plea from the heart and will seal their fate.
We have two volunteers over in Romania right now and they are distressed about winter approaching. What can I say? We just don’t have a miracle plan. The photo is of how we envisage the new runs would be.
Donations can be made by paypal (using Friends and family please) to firstname.lastname@example.org or to the RRA bank account which is:
Account number 24613333
Sort Code 40-47-31
If appropriate, and you haven’t done so before, please also complete our online gift aid form, so that we can claim an extra 25% on donations from UK taxpayers.
Thank you in anticipation as always, Lindsey.”
Lindsey Church (RRA Founder)