In 2015, an idea sparked a conversation, that conversation sparked a brainstorm, and that brainstorm bloomed into a program that has been saving lives ever since. The idea: what if we could give the scared/super shy/angry kitties time and a quiet space to settle? Would they overcome their fears and become adoptable?
From that initial brainstorm, the Let Settle program began to develop. Cats who come to the shelter too shy or angry for the adoption floor are set up for a week’s stay and put on a reassessment schedule. As long as they are improving, they remain in the program. So far over 800 cats have entered the program since 2015 and it is currently celebrating a 93% success rate. These are all lives saved thanks to YOU!
Last year on November 28, we dedicated #GivingMewsday, our twist on the global day of giving, #GivingTuesday, to the Let Settle program. Our donors knocked it out of the park. Not only did they hit their matching gift goal, they exceeded it by $5,000! It was a miraculous day and one that has helped the Let Settle program blossom even more, saving more lives in the process.
So what’s been going on in the Let Settle program for the past year, you ask? Well, let me show you!
First, we transformed a previously underutilized room into a spacious and airy room just for the members of the Let Settle program. We knocked down concrete kennel walls, deep-cleaned, and brought in temporary kennels while we waited for the permanent ones to arrive. The room that houses the Let Settle program was sponsored in honor of Monica Nicholas’ mother Tilly, and when the renovation was complete, staff hosted a dedication ceremony with Monica, staff, and Paul and Carol Manka.
Tilly’s Corner now houses four movable kennel units. Each one is made of up two kennels and is equipped with a specialized privacy screen to give the residents some darkness and a feeling of safety while they settle. These kennels proved to be useful in many other ways as well! When they arrived, we didn’t have an immediate need for them in Tilly’s Corner so we set two up in the lobby.
Evelyn, a 10-year-old diabetic cat was coming back to the shelter after she waited eight months in a foster home, undergoing therapy and assessment for her diabetes. After just a few hours in one of the sparkling new kennels, she went home to her perfect fit. It was magic, and now we know lobby kennels work!
You see? One day of giving has spread out and affected so many lives. Not only did Tilly’s Corner become the ideal place for the Let Settle program, we can now look at the lobby as prime real estate for hard-to-adopt animals, because we know it works!
Donors really do make all the difference in the world. What is sparked by inspiration born from necessity, is ignited by the dedication of our donors. We know what needs to be done from the shelter side, and our donors make it happen. It’s a blessed and wonderful partnership and one that I am in constant amazement of.
Join us for this year’s #GivingMewsday on November 27, 2018, as we continue our work to wrangle ringworm.