Local artist Manuela Maurus recently raffled off her painting of a kitten lounging in a hammock, valued at $400, as a fundraiser for The Comfie Cat Shelter.
“Hard times are hitting everybody with COVID going on, and I just wanted to do something to help the community,” Maurus said.
A second-place draw awarded a donor a $30 Tim Horton’s gift certificate.
“I know the cat shelter is a not-for-profit organization and they are in dire need of funds like everyone else is,” Maurus said.
“They totally rely on fundraising which has almost put them to a halt because of COVID, so I thought this would be a way for me to help them.”
She said she chose The Comfie Cat Shelter based on having positive dealings with the shelter in the past; she said "they just do an amazing job."
The raffle fundraiser exceeded Maurus’ expectations, raising $675.
“I was more than pleasantly surprised. My goal of $500 to $700 was a far reach for someone who was fundraising on their own, but I ended up getting $675, and I was very pleased,” she said.
Barb MacLeod, manager and founder of The Comfie Cat Shelter, says the shelter is thankful for Maurus’ generosity and partnership.
“She’s a lovely artist and has been affiliated with us through doing little things like this over the years,” MacLeod said.
“To raise that kind of money with the economy the way it is, it’s just fabulous and the painting is absolutely gorgeous.”
MacLeod says the donated funds will be used for vet bills to help get cats fixed, vaccinated, and medicated If needed.
“Right now, there is a big need. Our expenses keep getting higher and we can’t do any fundraising other than what people like Manuela are doing for us,” she said.
Adoptions have also been an issue during the pandemic.
“At the moment, we are very controlled with our adoptions because of the pandemic; everything is by appointment only. We only have three people in the building at a time, we have to make sure everyone is wearing a mask and being screened, so our adoptions are down a bit as a result,” MacLeod explained.
At the end of March, 84 cats and kittens were in the care of the shelter.
“This is kitten season, and we have kittens everywhere right now. Fortunately, we do have lots of foster homes, which is working out quite well, but there are expenses that come with that, like food,” MacLeod explained.
The pandemic has also created a larger population of homeless cats, which is creating a bigger need for help at the shelter.
“We are getting lots of calls from people who are being forced to surrender their animals, people are dying, some people can’t afford to keep them anymore, they’ve lost their homes, and a lot of the animals we have coming in are not fixed or vaccinated,” MacLeod said.
If you would like to make a donation to the shelter, click here.