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The Goathouse Refuge has many incredible cats in need of loving homes.

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Special Stories of Special Cats Your Support Helps

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Tax deductible donations and gifts of goods to help run the refuge are always welcome.

New Projects and Campaigns

9/7/20

What makes the Goathouse Refuge Special?

There are many animal rescues and shelters. Many local government operated shelters have euthanasia policies for animals who have spent too much time in  them; are too old, arrive with infirmities; or are considered non adoptable. With additional time to find forever homes or the proper care, many of these animals will become a loving companion to a human and family somewhere. Such was the case for Jackie Sparrow pictured here.

The Goathouse Refuge was created to be that place. To be the sanctuary, the refuge for cats of all types to find a temporary home until their forever companions are found or in some cases become their forever home.  Nestled near Pittsboro, NC among 16 acres of wooded land is the Goathouse Refuge.

The Goathouse Refuge provides a safe place for cats of all ages to come to be nurtured, to have their wounds healed, their trauma soothed by caring staff and volunteers among a variety of buildings and enclosures dedicated to the unique needs of each group of cats.  It is a refuge from the neglect and difficult situations these animals endured prior to finding their way to the Goathouse Refuge.

But to care for these cats in this type of setting requires a lot of daily care just for their basic needs.  Specialized medical care for their physical needs and above all LOVE from caring humans who want to help find a forever home.  This is the Goathouse Refuge.  We need your support to continue to provide this unique care and refuge. Your generous donation of each month will help us to feed these animals, administer medications, provide veterinary care, and attend to their daily physical needs.

Please consider becoming a Monthly Sustainer now!
Any amount from $5 to $500 per month will help us continue our mission. https://www.goathouserefuge.org/become-a-sustainer/  For new and increased sustainers, a generous donor has provided us a bonus contribution of $5,000 for us to increase our monthly sustainers level from $9,000 to $12,000 per month by Sept. 30. So please help us get this much needed bonus!
Sign up today. https://www.goathouserefuge.org/donate/

Thank you for helping us help the cats at the Refuge!

Helena Openshaw and Jeff Vojta


July 15, 2020

Dear Goathouse Sustainers, Donors and Friends:

We cannot thank you enough for your unwavering support of the Goathouse and its mission. Without your generous donations, we would not be able to care for the numbers of cats and kittens that make their way to the refuge.Most of which, we hope are adopted into loving families, but for others the Goathouse Refuge becomes a home where they can live out their lives in an environment that cats love.

For most of the Goathouse’s existence, donations in both direct financial support and in kind support of services, supplies, etc. have allowed the Goathouse to provide the funding needed to maintain the more than 3.0 acres of open cat habitat and various buildings  to provide shelter, medical care, and quarantining when necessary.

What does it take in funding to operate the Goathouse Refuge? It takes an eye-opening nearly $47,000 dollars per month for the Goathouse to operate. This covers the daily costs of paying people to care for the cats, which includes distributing medications, extensive cleaning throughout the day, including emptying, washing, and putting out clean litter boxes, washing tons of bedding and doing dishes for over 200 cats.As you can imagine, caring for cats of all ages and spread out among 3.0 acres takes a lot of effort.  Veterinary services and supplies are also very large expenses that cover more than just checking the health of every incoming cat or kitten and making sure they are healthy and ready for adoption. Because the Goathouse Refuge accepts and cares for injured, ill and older kitties that are rejected and given up on elsewhere, the medical costs of this extraordinary life-saving organization are higher than the ordinary rescue mission.

What is missing from this number? For one, fundraising costs. The Goathouse fundraising efforts are led entirely by its founder, SiglindaScarpa and numbers of volunteers and organizations who contribute in-kind efforts for the web, printing and media for our social media posts. They write, edit, take pictures, manage the web and social media content; and their reward is knowing they help cats who call the Goathouse home.

 

 

There are other administration costs associated with operating any type of business entity, profit or non-profit.  Accounting services, animal record keeping, grant writing and communications. We also have volunteer donors who take the cats to needed vet appointments, coordinate adoptions, and provide home inspections for fostering and prospective adopters. This is done on their own dime.

 

 

 

For direct financial support, the Goathouse has relied upon a combination of funding sources. Direct small contributor donations (under $1000 per donor per year), the sustainers pool (currently providing $8,500 per month), large donations (in excess of $1,000 per year, per donor), grants, bequests and numerous in-kind materials and supplies. Our average monthly recurring donations for 2020 average nearly $28,000 per month.  With average cash expenses of over $47,000, this leaves an average monthly deficit of nearly $20,000.

Admittedly at first glance, one would certainly ask how does the Goathouse remain open? This is because of the irregular large donations, grants, bequests and other sources that come in unplanned in intermitted periods, providing the Goathouse with the funds to break even over the course of the year.  The Goathouse does NOT have a large cash surplus or fund to cover deficits in the monthly expenses.

The goal of the 2020 Goathouse Refuge Security Campaignis to provide monthly recurring revenues to cover the recurring monthly expenses, leaving some of the large donations, grants and bequests to help provide for capital improvements and reserve fund for unexpected large expenses, such as the well pump this spring and the main cat building’s heating system in the middle of winter.

These are challenging times as we start this major Sustainer campaign to ensure the security of the Goathouse Refuge’s special mission.  We hope you can help in reaching our goal by increasing your monthly sustainer contributions, becoming a new sustainer, or even by choosing to divide your annual or occasional donation by 12 and pledging it monthly.

You can also help tremendously by letting your friends, family, and other animal lovers you know about the Goathouse Refuge and the life and health saving work it is doing and asking if they would consider becoming a sustainer or supporting our mission. So please share this letter.

Each cat needs on average $31 per month for just food, litter, medications.  Add in the staffing costs to provide basic care for the cats, the usual and preventative veterinary care and the medical care for the cats that are shunned and turned away elsewhere, and this can approach nearly $150 per cat per month. We have many old cats who have been here for many years and we take in old cats who are abandoned in shelters to be killed!

Please follow us on social media (www.facebook.com/TheGoathouseRefuge and www.instagram.com/goathouserefuge) and share our posts with friends and family and other animal rescue organizations.

 

Sincerely,

Jeff Vojta
Helena Openshaw
2020 Goathouse Refuge Security Campaign Lead

 


6/29/2020

Open letter to our friends and sustainers, as we look to the future of the Goathouse Refuge as well as its present well-being. 

As a Goathouse friend and donor you are a very important part of the Goathouse Refuge and your unwavering support during this challenging time continues to inspire each of us who love the cats and the unique mission of the Goathouse Refuge. We cannot thank you enough for all that you do to help support the daily feeding cleaning and care of the cats who live temporarily, or perhaps forever, at the Goathouse.

What makes the Goathouse Refuge so different from other animal shelters and rescues, is the unique environment for the cats that find their way to the Goathouse. Not only are the immediate physical needs of the cats and kittens cared for, their longer-term health and socialization are also critical to ensure they can find their forever homes. For cats that are not adoptable, the Goathouse Refuge serves as their comfortable forever home, where they can live out their years enjoying being cats … not clustered in cages or euthanized because no one wants them.

Because of its careful nurturing environment, the Goathouse requires more space, more labor and more veterinary costs that comparable shelters and rescues. The particular group of sustainer donors, who donate a fixed amount each month, is critical to ensure a stable level of funding to meet these needs. Through this group’s generous commitments, we cover nearly 18% of the total normal monthly fixed costs for our cat care, with the remainder coming from your Individual donations, fundraising, grants, and other large infrequent donations. As for many organizations, this year has been difficult and eye opening for us. During the first weeks of pandemic, there were days when we thought we might not be able to secure pet food, fix a broken water well pump and pay for other daily expenses. Thankfully through donors like you, we have managed to keep going. More often than not, each week has been a struggle to ensure we can pay the bills for the week. But something very positive has happened from this; we have been driven to more action.

For the past 22 years Siglinda Scarpa has been a pillar of the Goathouse Refuge. Not only is she there seven days a week loving the cats and supervising their care, but she is also central in much of the fundraising, and with individual donations in particular. The disruption in donations caused by the pandemic and the knowledge that the Goathouse Refuge must be prepared to continue without Siglinda one day when she retires, has driven us to focus on how to ensure there will be a more regular and dependable monthly flow of funds to cover the labor to feed the cats and to clean the cat enclosures and administer medicines.

The goal of the 2020 Goathouse Refuge Cat Security Campaign is to go from the current monthly sustainer coverage of 18% of the minimum basic monthly cost to feed and care for the cats to 100%. This will provide a dependable source of monthly funding to cover the basic monthly costs to feed the cats, pay for and administer their medicines clean the spaces and enclosures, and utilities. We will still need to continue to rely on single donations and other fundraising efforts to cover the considerable funds need for veterinary, spay/neutering, taxes, licenses, maintenance and repair, capital projects etc.

This letter serves as our official start of the 2020 Goathouse Refuge Security Campaign. Over the next several months, we plan to send out emails, post stories on the Behind the Scene of our web site, and post and share stories on our social media sites to help demonstrate why this sustained level of planned giving to the Goathouse is critical to fulfilling the Goathouse Refuge’s special mission.

We would encourage all our current sustainers to increase their generous monthly donations and former sustainers to consider giving again. For our other donors, adopters, and supporters, we invite you to help continue to support the Goathouse Refuge mission by becoming a sustainer.

These are challenging times as we start this major Sustainer campaign to ensure the security of the Goathouse Refuge’s special mission. We hope you can help in reaching our goal by increasing your monthly sustainer contributions. You can also help tremendously by letting your friends, family, and other animal lovers you know about the Goathouse Refuge and the special work it is doing and asking if they would consider becoming a sustainer or supporting our mission. So please share this letter. (Each cat needs on average $31 per month for just food, litter, medications, and veterinary care. With the costs to care for the cats, this can come to over $100 per month per cat. Add in the staffing costs this nearly $150 per cat per month!)

Purrfectly yours,

Helena Openshaw and Jeff Vojta
2020 Cat Security Sustainers Campaign Committee

 


June 16, 2020

Dear Friend of the Goathouse Refuge:

As a Goathouse Sustainer, you are a particularly important part of the Goathouse Refuge and your unwavering support during this challenging time continues to inspire each of us who love the cats and the unique mission of the Goathouse Refuge. We cannot thank you enough for all that you do to help support the daily feeding cleaning and care of the cats who live temporarily, or perhaps forever, at the Goathouse.

What makes the Goathouse Refuge so different from other animal shelters and rescues, is the unique environment for the cats that find their way to the Goathouse. Not only are the immediate physical needs of the cats and kittens cared for, their longer-term health and socialization are also critical to ensure they can find their forever homes. For cats that are not adoptable, the Goathouse Refuge serves as their comfortable forever home, where they can live out their years enjoying being cats and not be clustered in cages or euthanized because no one wants them.

Because of its careful nurturing environment, the Goathouse requires more space, more labor, and more veterinary costs than comparable shelters and rescues. The group of sustainer donors, who donate a fixed amount each month, is critical to ensure a stable level of funding to meet these needs. Through this group’s generous commitments, we cover nearly 18% of the total normal monthly fixed costs for our cat care, with the remainder coming from Individual donations, fundraising, grants, and other large infrequent donations. As for many, this year has been difficult and eye opening for us. During the first weeks of pandemic, there were days when we thought we might not be able to secure pet food, fix a broken water well pump and pay for other daily expenses. Thankfully through donors like you, we have managed to keep going. Often, each week has been a struggle to ensure we can pay the bills for the week. But something positive has happened from this; we have been driven to action.

The disruption in donations caused by the pandemic and the knowledge that the Goathouse Refuge must be prepared to continue to care for the cats entrusted in its care, has driven us to focus on how to ensure there will be a steadier more reliable monthly flow of funds to cover the labor to feed the cats and to clean the cat enclosures and administer medicines.

The goal of the 2020 Goathouse Refuge Cat Security Sustainer Campaign is to increase monthly contributions from the current monthly sustainer coverage of 18% of the minimum basic monthly cost to feed and care for the cats to 100%. This will provide a dependable source of monthly funding to cover the basic monthly costs to feed the cats, pay for and administer their medicines, clean the spaces and enclosures, and utilities. We need to continue to rely on single donations and other fundraising efforts to cover the considerable funds needed for veterinary, spay/neutering, taxes, licenses, maintenance and repair, capital projects etc. The all-volunteer board receives NO compensation from the Goathouse.

This letter serves as our official start of the 2020 Goathouse Refuge Cat Security Sustainer Campaign (“Sustainer Campaign”). Over the next several months, we plan to send out emails, post stories on the Behind the Scene of our website, and post and share stories on our social media sites to help demonstrate why this sustained level of planned giving to the Goathouse is critical to fulfilling the Goathouse Refuge’s special mission.

We would encourage all our current sustainers to increase their generous monthly donations and former sustainers to consider giving again. For our other donors, adopters, and supporters, we invite you to help continue to support the Goathouse Refuge mission by becoming a sustainer.

These are challenging times as we start this major Sustainer campaign to ensure the security of the Goathouse Refuge’s special mission. We hope you can help in reaching our goal by increasing your monthly sustainer contributions.

You can also help tremendously by letting your friends, family, and other animal lovers you know learn about the Goathouse Refuge and the tremendous work it is doing and asking if they would consider becoming a sustainer or supporting our mission. So please share this letter. Each cat needs on average $31 per month for just food, litter, medications, and veterinary care. With the costs to care for the cats, this can come to over $100 per month per cat. Add in the staffing costs this nearly $150 per cat per month!

Purrfectly yours,

Scarpa, Founder and Executive Director
Helena Openshaw and Jeff Vojta
2020 Cat Security Sustainers Campaign Committee

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