Staff at Yorkshire Cat Rescue  are hugely grateful to be benefiting from an emergency fund to help animal welfare charities who are struggling due to the effects of the pandemic. The charity is currently looking after 150 cats and kittens but has seen a significant drop in their fundraising income since lockdown.

In April the Association of Dogs and Cats Homes (ADCH), the umbrella body for companion animal rescue organisations, set up an Emergency Fund to provide support to animal rescues like us to help get them through the crisis. In response, pet food manufacturers have contributed emergency food supplies with Mars Petcare, James Wellbeloved, Purina, Naturediet, IAMS, Forthglade and AJM Pet Products supplying over 91 pallets of dog and cat food. 

In addition, Pet Remedy have provided over £17,000 worth of products to help animals who are staying longer than usual in animal welfare shelters, Protectapet have contributed security fencing, MDC Exports have provided animal carriers, Animal Courses Direct are offering dog first aid webinars for Continuing Professional Development and Royal Canin are offering donations of food direct to ADCH members.   

Claire Horton, Chairman of the Association of Dogs and Cats Homes, said:

“We are delighted that Yorkshire Cat Rescue has been able to benefit from the emergency fund. There are around 1200 dog and cat rescue organisations across the UK and the Republic of Ireland, a significant number of whose very survival is threatened by the impact of coronavirus. The ADCH Emergency Fund has been set up to help these rescues get through this crisis and avert potentially catastrophic consequences for animals in urgent need in the UK.”

The donations are being distributed to charities across the country who are members of the ADCH with larger organisations such as RSPCA, Dogs Trust, Cats Protection and the National Animal Welfare Trust providing regional collection points for local charities. Yorkshire Cat Rescue has collected Gourmet Pearl Soup sachets from the RSPCA, Sheffield and has distributed many sachets to other organisations in the Bradford area.  

Sara Atkinson, Founder of Yorkshire Cat Rescue said:

“We are absolutely delighted to have been able to benefit from the emergency fund. In the last few weeks we have seen our fundraising income fall quite significantly and the donation of this food will help us enormously. 

“It has been such a difficult time and it will continue to be challenging for the foreseeable future, so we want to say a huge thank you to all the businesses that have donated so generously. It will make a huge difference and will help us make sure all the animals in our care will get everything they need whilst they are with us.”  

In an emergency survey* carried out by the ADCH amongst its membership, every single organisation had seen a downturn in income and over half said fundraising income had already reduced by over 50%. In addition, just 52% of members said they had three months of income and reserves remaining, whilst 32% had less than three months, and some significantly less than this.

Claire added:

“We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who has donated these vital supplies to help out animal welfare organisations who are struggling at this difficult time.

“Our absolute priority is to do everything we can to make sure animal welfare charities can continue to provide the animals in their care with everything they need until it is time for them to find their forever homes. Thanks to industry partners we have been able to help rescues across the country continue their vital work.”