Tag Archives: Volunteering

Annual Street Collections 2017, Round 2

The second round of street collections has begun!

 

We kicked off yesterday in Fermoy and are so grateful to all the volunteers who donated a bit of their time to help raising funds for the local community to neuter stray and feral cats. The support was amazing and we are glad to announce that €591 were raised. Thank you to all who supported!

 

On the 29th of September, we will be collecting in Castlemartyr and would be grateful for any help you can give.

 

On the 20th of October, we will be in Carrigtohill (9am to 6pm). Please get in touch if you can help out!

 

Last but not least, we will be in Midleton on the 27th of October and really need helpers for it to be a success!

Thank you to all who offer their time to help out as the success of these collections depends on you!

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Annual Street Collections 2017, Round 1

The season of street collections has begun for us.

We kicked off last week in Youghal and are so grateful to all the volunteers who donated a bit of their time to help raising funds for the local community to neuter stray and feral cats. The support was amazing and we are glad to announce that €574 were raised on the day. Thank you to all who supported!

On the 29th of June, we will be collecting in Mitchelstown and would be grateful for any help you can give.

On the 7th of July, we are back in East Cork with a collection in Whitegate (9am to 6pm). Please get in touch if you can help out!

We will have more collection after the summer: Fermoy on the 14th of September, Castlemartyr on the 29th of September, Carrigtohill on the 20th of October and finally Midleton on the 27th of October. Thank you to all who offer their time to help out as the success of these collections depends on you!

Street Collections 2016

We are looking for volunteers to help out at the following street collections. Please, consider donating an hour or two of your time to help us to raise some much needed funds for the local stray and feral cats!

Street collections 2016_web

Please email communitycatsnetwork@gmail.com or text 086 1583501 if you can help. Thanks!

11/06/16: Youghal

23/06/16: Mitchelstown

1/07/16: Whitegate

8/09/16: Fermoy

23/09/16: Castlemaryr

6/10/16: Mallow

14/10/16: Carrigtohill

21/10/16: Midleton

Volunteers in the Spotlight: David

We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN: what is their motivation, what they do and whether they find it rewarding.

Here is what David has to say…

I have been a cat owner and lover since the age of 12 and to date have had 5 different pet cats (Sparky, Fergie, Kiko, Smudge and Sooty), all with their own unique personalities. Smudge and Sooty (pictured) were my most recent recruits, coming from a loving country house on the border between South Tipperary and Kilkenny in 2012. Smudge was initially a lone pet, but we decided to get her a partner in Sooty, and after a short time Smudge accepted her and they became inseparable (One of Smudges sibling’s was also Sooty’s mother so maybe they sensed the family bond). Unfortunately life threw up a tragic path for Sooty as she became seriously ill in 2014 with the rare disease Primary Immune Mediated Hemolytic Anaemia. She fought the disease admirably for some time but eventually her condition and quality of life deteriorated to the extent that we had to let her slip away. I, personally will never forget the bond that I had with Sooty, and even on her sickest days she still had so much love to give. Also, to see how Smudge very obviously grieved for her when we lost her reiterated to me the affection that cats have for both their owners and their feline companions. This, I think is often lost on many people who view cats as being selfish animals devoid of emotions.

I had heard about CCN through a friend, and did some research into what they did. I had always had an interest in animal charity work, and did some fundraising work for the marine conservation charity Sea Shepherd Ireland previously, but had never really had the free time to commit to it, and donating clothes to the various animal charity shops was my way of contributing because of that. As is often the case in life in many ways, it took the tragedy of losing Sooty to kick start my interest in working with CCN. I had witnessed at close quarters the love that my cats had to give on a daily basis, and also the health and behavioural changes in Sooty during her illness, which were remarkable. Initially she had hidden the extent of her condition so well (a common ability in cats) that she was almost on deaths door when it got bad enough to rush her to the vet.  It is now clear to me that there are cats being neglected and suffering in this manner, in addition to losing their lives needlessly every day simply due to the issue of overbreeding and a lack of food and healthcare. These cats are born into this existence through no fault of their own, without the care of a loving home, and they deserve the care and protection of their communities, just as their domestic cats enjoy.

I was successful in gaining the newsletter editor and writer role with CCN in March 2015. I believe that the camera lens is one of the most powerful weapons in the modern world, and many animal welfare organisations have made significant strides due to getting their stories across into the media and the public’s consciousness. Since I joined CCN, I have been extremely impressed with the stories which I have read of their Trap, Neuter and Return (TNR) work, which keeps the cat populations under control. These are always accompanied by a set of informative photographs which provide the reader with a clear idea of the dedication, patience and care which is needed to complete these projects. It is great to see people give up their own time to travel around (sometimes to several counties) with the sole aim of reducing the suffering and improving the health of Ireland’s feral cats. I am delighted to get the chance to put these stories in writing to educate the public on the overbreeding issue, and the potential solution which is available to them through TNR. To date, I have found it both interesting and rewarding to work on the first newsletter and Emilie has been very helpful at all times. I look forward to contributing more in the coming year and I would recommend CCN to anyone thinking about volunteering. “RIP Sooty. Gone but never forgotten”

Smudge and Sooty David Kelly

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.

 

Volunteers in the Spotlight: Laura M

We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN: what is their motivation, what they do and whether they find it rewarding.

Here is what Laura has to say…

There are many reasons why I volunteer with Community Cats Network, but the main reason is my love of animals and my passion to help stray and feral cats to live a happy and healthy life.

The first sick cat I became aware of was a female calico that turned up on my doorstep one evening. It was obvious she was very sick. I was able to pick her up and took her to a local vet where she was treated for cat flu. I called her ‘Bubbles’ because of her runny nose. Over the following days she had a nice warm bed in my shed and received medication daily, but she was not recovering; in fact, she was getting worse. Again, I brought her to a vet where she got a blood test and unfortunately she tested positive for FeLV and had to be put to sleep. At this time I was only 18 years old and I knew very little about cats or any sickness they could develop. I found the whole thing very upsetting and could not understand how it had all happened. After that I started to look out for cats and any signs of sickness.

Cats, over the years, have been dealt a raw deal as it is the perception of many people that cats can fend for themselves. Around the area I live, over the years, I have seen many very sick and injured cats and I became really concerned that the population was increasing at an alarming rate. Many kittens born to feral mothers rarely survive because of illness such as cat flu etc.

It was very disheartening at first as many of the cats I picked up off the streets were in such a bad state that the only option was to euthanise. This was always done with consultation and advice from a vet. A lot of the time I spent taking beautiful cats off the streets with horrific injuries and diseases.

I became involved in Community Cats Network because TNR appealed to me. I never realised how many feral cats were in my area alone and what could really be achieved by Trap, Neuter and Return. Members of the public will feed a stray cat but many do not understand that when you feed a stray then you have a responsibility towards that animal. With Community Cats Network I have learned so much myself and one of the main things is that the public need to be educated on cat population control and cat welfare. An area benefits if a group of people come together to help neuter male and female cats and return them back to that area. This little colony will live happily together and will not allow another group of cats into the area. They play an important role in our community. This aspect of volunteering really appeals to me because healthy and neutered cats are allowed to live their lives and are safe in their own neighbourhood. They are easily identified with their tipped ears so they won’t be trapped again unless sick or injured.

I help out with TNR around the North Cork area, I meet the cats’ carers and make arrangements to go ahead with the projects. I trap the cats humanely, take them to the vets, care for them after surgery and release them the following day once they have recovered.

The ethos of Trap Neuter Return is one that I advocate to any neighbourhood and volunteering with an organisation such as Community Cat Network is satisfying because it means that less cats are suffering. Those that have been part of our TNR program are returned to their own colony where they can live out their lives as happier and healthier cats.

14 09 24 a web

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.

 

Volunteers in the Spotlight: Sara C

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 Sara has to say…

Why do I try and help CCN and do I do enough are the questions I ask myself.   I used to live in Cork and moved back 3 years ago and came across CCN via their Facebook page. I really wanted to help as this small charity really appealed to me as they are trying to solve the root cause of a big problem and not just rehoming or feeding – But how could I help?

I was working full time doing shifts, and I was going back to University and with other family commitments, was I going to put my name down as a volunteer only to end up letting someone down?

So how did I start? Well, I was lucky enough to have some spare money so I made a big food donation – ordered very easily from Amazon and I made the order at midnight during my other online shopping J – so I set my thoughts on the fund raising side of things.  I work for a large company and have got a wide network of friends in Cork – most of these people either move home, have family and changing interests and therefore now and then they have a ‘clear out’ in their homes.  This started with things like toys, books, games and soon moved on to bigger and better things including computers, office furniture and bikes.   I remind all my network regularly about my collections, especially if I hear someone is moving house ! and then I collect and store any goods in my loft ready for the better weather when car boot sales are at their peak.   I do some of these myself but I have also connected with another lady who runs a lot of sales and also sells a lot of the content via the web.

For my Secret Santa at work for the past few years a group of us now ask for a contribution to CCN and people have ‘gifted’ donations for me for birthdays.

When I compare myself to others, I don’t do much – I collect stock, I sell calendars at Christmas, I man a stall now and then, I source gifts for raffles – but I DO SOMETHING and I really believe that every little helps.

13 06 03 CBS Blarney crop

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.

 

Volunteers in the Spotlight: Nina

We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN: what is their motivation, what they do and whether they find it rewarding.

Here is what Nina has to say…

When I moved to Cork about 1.5 years ago I wanted get involved in volunteer work and for me the obvious cause was helping animals. I could see that lots of voluntary work is done in the Cork area and people really care for animals and put time and effort in the work.

I contacted CCN after reading about the organisation and what they do as I found the cause and approach great; helping the stray cats and at the same time raising awareness and encouraging people to take responsibility for the lives of the cats living close to them. Because in the end, no organisation can take care of all the animals in need, people need to learn what they can do themselves to help and how easy and small deeds of good can change the lives of animals.

I was received with this great small group of volunteers, welcoming me to help out as there is always work that needs to be done. They had a job for me straight away, I started working on the admin for CCN. This suited me more than better as it is something you can do whenever you have a free moment and, like this, you can help out even if your time might be limited.

I have also helped in one of the stalls in Maxi Zoo, selling products and raising awareness. I found this a nice experience as well, as you get to meet so many animal lovers, tell about CCN and chat with people about their pets and hear their stories.

I can recommend volunteering to everyone, it’s a great way to do something good. It does not need to take so much of your time, you can help with whatever you are good at and there are many ways to help. The best part is that with your input, even if you give just a little bit of your time, you know you are making the difference.

15 02 14 a

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.

 

Volunteers in the Spotlight: Laura H

We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN: what is their motivation, what they do and whether they find it rewarding.

Here is what Laura has to say…

I have been helping out with Community Cat Network for a few years now.

One of the ways I help out is by doing fundraising. For example late last year we did a street collection in Fermoy where we raised enough money to neuter a colony of cats in the area. The result of giving a few hours of my time that day meant that there will be less unwanted kittens born in a few months time wandering the streets looking for food and shelter. I have also stood behind information tables for an hour or two in places like Maxi Zoo where information leaflets are available to provide to members of the public if they have any queries on what we do or need further information on what to do if they have stray cats in the area. We also sell some arts and crafts at these tables that are produced by our other more creative volunteers:)

I also distribute charity cards and calendars at my workplace and to shops and vets in the area I live in. This also raises vital funds so we can continue to neuter as many cats as possible.

All of the above might only amount to an hour or 2 a month but every bit helps and without this kind of help from volunteers Community Cats Network could not continue doing the great work it does.

Laura

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.

 

Volunteers in the Spotlight: Sarah M

We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN: what is their motivation, what they do and whether they find it rewarding.

Here is what Sarah has to say…

I was never a big fan of cats, I thought they were cute but they scared me a bit… until Bobby was trapped as a tiny kitten in the wall of the building. I decided I had no choice but to look after him for the night and try to find someone to take him the next day. Almost 2 years later I am definitely a “Crazy Cat Lady”.

A couple of months after taking Bobby in, a female cat (I’m almost certain his mother) started appearing at the window making a horrific noise. I thought something was wrong with her and phoned around to find out it was more than likely she was calling and was given the details of CCN.

I was shocked to learn that a cat could be calling and pregnant again so soon after having a litter. I also couldn’t believe they could get pregnant so young. CCN came and neutered this frightened young cat which was a massive relief! Soon after, she started inviting her boyfriend for dinner, a very rough looking ginger boy who was constantly cut up from fighting with other cats and destroyed in ear mites. CCN neutered & treated him and now he is the most loving friendly stray you could meet. He is determined to move himself in and loves his comforts. Soon after, cat number 3 came… Another young male who lost most of his ear from fighting! He was neutered and is now a huge healthy boy who goes from house to house flirting and filling his belly.

Through Community Cats Network, I have been educated a lot and have had my eyes opened to the huge feral cat population in Youghal. I try to help out when I can, helping with TNRs, street collections, selling raffle tickets and helping with a bingo night. I would encourage others to volunteer, not only does it help the cats in the town but it also gives you a chance to get involved in the community. It doesn’t matter whether you love or hate cats, the events are a bit of fun for everyone and raise much needed funds.

So many times I hear of people feeding ferals, but don’t want to take any responsibility financially or medically for them. We need to remember that these are homeless animals who did not ask to be here!  By neutering our own pets, ferals and helping even in a small way with fundraising and raising awareness we can collectively give these animals a better life and take the pressure off the people who are caring for them!

You don’t have to give up a lot of time or money to help…. knitting a couple of toys for a stall, donating some items for the car boot sales, distributing a few leaflets or giving up an hour to help with a street collection…. all of these small things help!

Through CCN I’ve met some great people, had some fun and of course met some wonderful kitties.

CCN ARE making a difference! It is fantastic to see cats that were in bad states now living in the community as healthy, happy animals! 

14 07 03 c web

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.

 

Volunteers in the Spotlight: Paudie

We have asked our volunteers to tell us a bit about their experience of volunteering with CCN: what is their motivation, what they do and whether they find it rewarding.

Here is what Paudie has to say…

I first started following Community Cats Network on Facebook as a cat lover who did not realise the extent of the feral cat problem in this country. I was not aware of the suffering and hardship most of these cats face throughout their short lives. 

By following CCN’s stories and updates I became very aware of it and, once aware, I knew I had to somehow help. At first I didn’t know how so I just made some random donations but then when I read the story of Pippin, the kitten with the deformed leg who was rescued and now needed a home, I offered to give her one.  

After taking in Pippin and making a contact within the charity, I wanted to help some more and started volunteering when I could to sell raffle tickets and calendars and do the occasional few hours at a stall or street collection. 

When I saw that CCN needed a Twitter admin, I offered and now update their Twitter feed daily with the latest news and inform followers of upcoming events. 

I am very happy to be a volunteer with Community Cats Network as I feel their work is so very important and under appreciated. I know that my cat Pippin would not be here if not rescued as, with her deformed leg, she would not have survived long as a feral. Every cat deserves a chance and that’s why I continue to help out where I can and intend to do more volunteering in the future as I know that every bit of help makes a difference and that the cats need us. 

Penny

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.