We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN, what is their motivation, what do they do and whether they find it rewarding.
Here is what Pat and David have to say…
Eleven years ago we moved to Ireland together with our two cats. Within a few months our first “stray” arrived and I fed her; she was already pregnant and produced five kittens in the barn next door. We managed to trap them all eventually and had them neutered. They became The Outside Cats. I very soon realised what a terrible problem Ireland had with feral/stray/dumped cats and, as and when one turned up needing food, it was duly fed and as soon as possible taken to our vet. Trying to trap cats without proper equipment was a nightmare and veterinary fees costly. Some strays were too sick to come back from the vet, four went to new homes and tragically two have been killed on the road.
We knew it was absolutely vital to do what we could and at that time there was no Community Cats Network to turn to for help.
CCN has changed the lives of hundreds of cats and saved thousands of kittens from being born to a life of misery and suffering. Although our input is small we are proud to be associated with CCN and to do what we can. We collect anything useful for car boots and stalls and enlisted the help of a friend who makes wonderful little catnip mice to sell! We have looked for (and found!) hidden goodies in our attics and buy small items which are suitable for prizes. I helped with the Youghal Street Collection for the last two years. CCN held a Bingo Night in Youghal last October; I made cakes and sandwiches and my husband, David, found himself voted in as Bingo Master for the event, where an amazing amount was raised for the Youghal cats. We put leaflets and posters around spreading the word about CCN’s work wherever we can and occasionally help with ferrying people/cats to the vet when there is a problem.
What we do to help CCN is a drop in the ocean and I only wish we could do more – but however insignificant “our bit” seems, we hope perhaps it frees someone else to do the more important and vitally essential work which takes up so much of the team’s time.
There are many ways to volunteer and support us to help the cats. For more information, visit our volunteering page. You can also join our “Helping Hands” Facebook group to keep updated of our various appeals.