After nearly a decade in the kitten-saving business Vancouver Orphan Kitten Rescue (VOKRA) may be forced to close its doors after amassing more than $35,000 in veterinary bills.
“We’re going to be forced to shut down,” said Maria Soroski, co-founder of VOKRA. “Donations have been down all year.”
Founded in early 2001, VOKRA has placed thousands of abandoned and orphaned kittens into foster homes throughout the Lower Mainland.
This year alone the group has rescued more than 1,000 felines. The group also helps spay and neuter the kittens of 50 to 60 low-income families every year.
“We do it because there are just so many cats out there it just breaks our heart,” she said.
The charity also relied for the last three years on money willed to them that has recently run out.
While Soroski admits a sluggish economy has also been a factor in their troubles, two large, unanticipated rescues earlier this year hit their group hard.
Karen Duncan, co-founder of VOKRA with Soroski, admits the group may have over-extended themselves this past year.
“We expanded into Surrey from just Vancouver and Burnaby,” said Duncan. “Surrey is a very big problem and I realize now I just can’t take on that city by myself.”
• Visit www.orphankittenrescue.com for more info and to make a donation.