AN ambitious plan to provide a re-homing centre for abandoned cats and kittens is due to be discussed by a Melksham charity next week.
The proposal has been suggested as the most effective way of coping with the “overwhelming” number of abandoned or unwanted animals which are currently cared for by a small number of hardworking volunteers.
Cats Action Trust North & West Wiltshire will discuss the plans at the charity’s annual general meeting, due to be held at Spencer Sport & Social Club in Beanacre Road next Tuesday 14th October at 7.30pm. Volunteers and supporters are invited to attend the meeting to debate the proposal. Trust chairman Chris Wordley said, “Last year it was agreed by our committee and trustees that we should place all future legacies into a fund to acquire a re-homing centre in or near Melksham in order to ensure the long-term future of the charity.
“It was becoming increasingly difficult to find foster carers and the number of incoming cats was often overwhelming.
“Therefore we set aside £50,000 in a separate ring-fenced fund but we don’t want to take the next step until we have the approval of our wider membership, which is why it’s so important that we hear the views of as many people as possible before they all vote on the proposal. A re-homing centre would enable us to increase the number of cats we care for and would provide a single point of contact for all enquiries.
“The Trust aims to remain an all-volunteer organisation, with a volunteer on-site manager working with our supporters to create a work rota. However, we would continue to use local foster carers as well. Our current estimate is that a re-homing centre would cost around £1million but we wouldn’t want the charity to be burdened with debt so this would obviously need huge support from fundraisers and donors.
“Of course there are other scenarios, such as the Trust being bequeathed a suitable property which could then be adapted for cattery use, or we could buy an existing commercial cattery.
“It’s a big step for a small charity, but there are other cat rescue groups throughout the country who successfully run re-homing centres in a similar way.
“If this proposal is to succeed it will require the approval in principle from members present at our AGM, as well as the wider support from the local community who already help us in so many ways.”
Last year Cats Action Trust North & West Wiltshire rescued almost 170 cats and kittens and re-homed 150.
Call (01380) 850406 or email catsactiontrust@gmail. com for more details or to view the animals available for adoption, visit www.catsaction trust.org.uk or find the charity on Facebook or Twitter.