We’re currently looking to recruit a few foster carers to join our 8 Lives family. As a small rescue we’ve cared for 98% of our cats in our own home. However as our funds become a bit more buoyant and the need for cats to come into rescue grows and grows … we’re looking for a few committed people to offer some space and love in their homes for cats who otherwise may not survive the circumstances they find themselves in.
You may have seen the lovely story of the transformation of Paul in his foster home. He came to us after living for months on the streets, grubby, wounded, not neutered, terrified of people. He went to his foster carers neutered, patched up, slightly cleaner and with a little bit of confidence and hope. His lovely foster family have given him a safe space, the opportunity to spend a lot more time around people than he was able to get here and lots of patience and love. It’s been an investment that’s paid dividends …. he’s now so clean that he shines, his confidence is coming on in leaps and bounds, in fact … speaking of leaps and bounds …. he’s now playing for the first time since his feeder spotted him as a stray many months ago.
It’s not just people like Paul who need foster homes, he’s just an example of the change that fostering can make: There are also oldies who need a safe space out of the wind and rain, and a lap to snuggle on until they can find a furever home.
And young mums with tiny kittens who need safety and a roof over their heads whilst they bring the kids up and then have a chance to restart their lives.
There are older kits who are often dumped once they’re no longer tiny cute kittens: they need a safe space to crash, and to sort out their family planning options before their little lives go awry.
There are cats of all ages and abilities who fall on hard times, almost never of their own making, who need a safe place to stay while they get their lives sorted out.
What we ask of foster carers:
A secure room separate from other pets and away from external doors
Cats to be kept safely indoors through foster placement
Feed, clean, play with, cuddle, observe the cat/s
Communicate with rescue and send updates and photos
Take cat/s to Millhouses Vets4Pets as agreed for appointments
Welcome potential adopters coming to meet the cat/s. [Potential adopters will have been homechecked by rescue prior to any visits]
What we offer:
Any equipment needed …. litter trays, food bowls, beds, toys.
Food and cat litter
Vet costs including routine flea and worm treatment
Support/ advice with any health/behaviour issues
Advertising cat for adoption, homecheck of any potential adopters.
All adoption paperwork and transfer of cat to new home.
The opportunity to be awesome and make a real difference to lives that were going off the rails.
Don’t just take our word for it … here’s the experience of one lovely foster family in their own words:
Having adopted a cat from 8 Lives a few months previously we kept up to date of other cats’ comings and goings via Facebook. It was there that we read the story of one poor soul – so lucky to have been rescued by 8 Lives but desperately scared, anxious and withdrawn. After a few weeks it became apparent that he needed a bit more time to help him come out of his shell and, at the very least, work out what sort of home would best suit him. With kittens arriving at 8 Lives, that’s when we saw the message on Facebook asking for a foster family.
We could offer a spare room, safety, patience and most of all some time to spend with him. Our teenage daughters joined in the challenge of making him feel settled. Early days were slow with him hiding behind furniture and scurrying away when we walked in the room. Over a few days and with some gentle coaxing he gradually started to come out for treats from us, then he started to eat food in front of us. Still very anxious and wary, sometimes it was just a case of sitting in the same room watching television or reciting poems and Shakespeare in preparation for exams! Clearly every cat is different but once he started feeling safe and trusting us he flourished.
We found we didn’t really need to adapt our routines or home-life when fostering – it was more about offering what everyday life is about: hearing noises, seeing people and learning to trust. 8 Lives is always there for help and information, and we felt very supported. The reward you get is knowing that you are helping to bring out a cat’s true personality enabling 8 Lives to make the right choice of a forever home for them. Alongside your foster cat getting the attention they need (and deserve) it also frees up space at 8 Lives to help some other desperate kitty.
We’d never fostered before but as a family we have shared the satisfaction of knowing we have helped improve a kitty’s future and have found the experience genuinely fulfilling, and we think others will too!!
There are other rescues who are bigger and better known and attract more volunteers. We’re not so well known but because we’re a small rescue as a foster carer you will become part of our rescue family rather than just be A N Other volunteer. If you are interested in helping please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.