‘Tis the season of giving, and what better gift to give, than one that makes a real difference to the lives of cats. In this article, we’ll explore 5 impactful ways that you can give back this holiday season and help animals in your local shelter.
1. Foster a cat or kitten in your home
Animal shelters and cat rescue organisations are always looking for foster carers, especially during peak periods such as kitten season. If you have enough space and can offer a safe and loving environment for a cat or kitten until they find their forever home, this could be an ideal way for you to give back this holiday season.
Reach out to your local cat rescue or animal shelter for more information on what’s involved. Generally, you will need to provide a foster cat with a comfortable sleeping area as well as basic care. This includes food, litter and transport to necessary veterinary appointments.
Some organisations are able to provide financial help to cover the expenses associated with being a foster carer, thanks to generous community donations.
2. Sponsor a cat in need
If you live in an apartment, are renting, or your family situation doesn’t allow you to foster or adopt a cat, then sponsoring could be a good option for you.
Sponsors contribute a fixed monthly amount (usually $15 or more) to help cover the costs associated with caring for cats in animal shelters. Sponsors often support cats who are in long-term foster situations due to their age or chronic health issues. Your sponsorship would contribute towards essential items such as food, litter and veterinary bills.
Many rescue organisations will acknowledge your generosity and send you a sponsorship certificate with a photo and details of the cat you are supporting. Depending on the organisation, you may also have the opportunity to visit the cat or adopt them if your living situation changes in the future.
For businesses considering sponsorship, it’s worth noting that this can also provide marketing and promotional opportunities. By aligning your business with a charitable cause, you not only help shelter animals in need but also enhance your company’s reputation within the community.
3. Volunteer your time and skills
If you’re seeking a rewarding volunteer opportunity, why not give your time or skills to help your local cat rescue or animal shelter. These organisations are always looking for volunteers and there are usually a range of opportunities available such as:
- transporting cats to and from vet appointments
- writing engaging cat adoption profiles
- providing help with administration tasks
- raising awareness through social media and marketing efforts
- coordinating fundraising events.
These are a few examples of how you can contribute. There are many other ways to give back and help your local animal shelter.
4. Make a monetary donation
The majority of animal shelters and cat rescue organisations operate as non-profit charities. This means they rely heavily on the dedication of volunteers and financial support from fundraising activities and generous contributions from the local community. Every donation, regardless of its size, plays a crucial role in supporting cats and kittens in care.
As well as supporting a great cause, your charitable donations may also offer tax benefits. In Australia, for instance, donations exceeding $2 are tax-deductible.
5. Donate ‘wish list’ items
If you prefer to contribute in a more practical way, cat rescue organisations and shelters often have a list of much-needed items. Contact your local animal shelter or visit their website to access their wish list. This enables you to donate an item that is currently in high demand.
Wish lists include items such as:
- wet and dry cat food
- kitten formula
- over-the-counter medications like flea and worm treatment
- cat litter and litter boxes
- cleaning and office supplies.
By donating these essential items, you can contribute to the well-being and happiness of the cats and kittens in their care.
There are many ways you can give back to animal shelters and cat rescue organisations during the holiday season. You could become a foster carer, sponsor a cat in need, volunteer your time and skills, give a monetary donation, or chose to donate much-needed practical items from a shelters’ wish list. Whatever option you choose, you can make a real difference in the lives of cats. We’d love to hear how you have contributed to your local shelter, or any other ideas you have for helping cats in need – leave us a comment below.