Their Humble Beginnings
Samantha Berger gave up her life in the corporate world to fulfil a dream of making a difference to the lives of many abused, abandoned and neglected domestic animals. Starting with two litters of stray kittens housed in her spare room, soon Samantha was caring for over 300 animals with the help of 18 staff members.
Needless to say, the journey has been fraught with what has seemed like insurmountable mountains to climb, tears and heartache. They have had to move properties three times before finding their current property in Midrand. They have been crippled by burglaries and faced the devastation of a fire. Rand Water tore up their property, with very little compensation, and made it almost impossible for them to operate for seven full months. But the challenges they face fade away when they look at all the lives they save.
Creating A Happy Home For Animals
Kitty and Puppy Haven have seen the most broken and traumatised animals learn to trust again. They nurse their fur babies physically and emotionally and make them whole again. And Samantha and her team say there can be no greater reward. Their slogan is ‘We Change Their Destiny’. Once an animal comes into their care, no expense is spared to meet all that animal’s needs and to find them the perfect forever home. Some animals, like their feral cats, will spend the rest of their days at Kitty and Puppy Haven as they can’t be homed. But this foundation still loves those animals like their own and sees to their every need. Anyone who has seen their Cat Sanctuary will attest to this.
Right now, Kitty and Puppy Haven are in crisis mode. Their sanctuary is closed due to the national lockdown. They have had to move 14 members of staff onto the property, both to care for their animals and for their own safety. Kitty and Puppy Haven are housing and feeding them and doing everything possible to ensure their comfort during this time. Their operating costs have risen and they have absolutely no income. They still have to pay salaries, rates, water and electricity, provide food for their animals and staff and pay for veterinary visits and care. Their operating costs are over R250 000 per month. And at the moment, they are unable to conduct fundraisers, receive physical donations, operate their shop or process any adoptions.
How Are They Coping During This Time?
Some may ask why Kitty and Puppy Haven did not go the foster route and seek homes for their animals during lockdown. The answers are simple:
- What if they needed veterinary care?
- What if their carer got sick?
- How would they be able to understand being lavished with love in a home environment and building a relationship with their carer, only to be returned to the sanctuary once lockdown is lifted?
How Can You Make A Difference?
The situation is dire and that is why Samantha and her team are appealing to the public for help. They are asking the public to help them get through by making a donation, no matter how big or small. Anything will help and will be greatly appreciated. It can be a once off, or a monthly donation (just request a debit order form). They are a registered Public Beneficiary Organisation, so donations can be tax deductible and they can issue an 18A tax certificate.
Donations can be made to:
Kitty and Puppy Haven
Nedbank, Cheque Account, Sandton City
Acc. No: 1970845082
Branch code: 197005
Reference: Lockdown Crisis