Vancouver is a dog-friendly town but we must not forget about the cats out there that patrol our neighbourhoods, keep our laps warm, and pose for incredibly adorable photos that we can’t help but post online and share with the world. This weekend VOKRA (Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue Association) is hosting their 3rd Annual Walk for the Kitties.
“The Walk for the Kitties is our largest fundraiser of the year and it is crucial for us to raise the funds we need to keep the organization going,” says Alexis Baran who does communications and public relations as a volunteer with VOKRA.
VOKRA provides public education about cat care, a trap/neuter/return program, a feral cat program, re-homing program, and a pre-natal/natal/orphan program. Since its founding 12 years ago, the organization has gone from assisting 150 kittens and adult cats per year to over 800 in 2008 and over 1,420 in 2009. The Walk for the Kitties came about in 2010.
“We love to get the community involved and it is really inspiring to have a day when so many of us come together and are able to meet and share stories, and see how many lives we all impact.. And I don’t only mean the cats.”
Baran says that their members and volunteers have rescued animals of all kinds including the infamous skunk downtown who had a bubble tea lid stuck around its neck. “Maria Soroski (Co-Founder) is an expert cat trapper, and has trained other volunteers in the art of rescue. Rescuing Bubbles the skunk in the West End came from that expertise, and our volunteers are often happy to extend their cat rescue knowledge to help other animals in need whenever they can.”
Karen Duncan (Co-Founder) rescues cats and kittens and cares for them night and day, which includes bottle-feeding motherless kittens who would not otherwise survive. She has also rescued a giant mastiff and has assisted in the rescue of other large dogs.
“Because we are animal lovers, we don’t give up on cats who are deemed “unadoptable.” We work with them and provide what they need to thrive, be that attention from some of our amazing fosters who are able to get “feral” cats to trust people again or be it extra special medical attention. We think these animals deserve a chance and do everything within our power to provide that.”
You can join VOKRA on September 23rd for the 5km walk at Jericho Beach. Registration is still open and it should be a great day to get out for a walk and support a good local volunteer-run organization. Follow VOKRA on Facebook and Twitter for more information.