Animal charity seeks support for funding bid

Aid4Aid committee members attending the City run adoption fair, Paws-a-While, in October last year. from left, are Grant O’Neill, Leanne Gericke, Blair O’Neill and Taryn Thomas.

A Kirstenhof animal-welfare organisation is seeking public support for its bid to join a funding programme.

Aid 4 Animals in Distress has provisional approval to join the My School, My VIllage, My Planet programme, says Grant O’Neill, one of the organisation’s eight committee members.

“This will bring in much-needed monthly spending, solely as a result of supporters shopping at Woolworths. However, before we are fully approved and listed on the website and system, we need to submit a minimum of 50 completed forms. These forms need to be returned to us as we need to send them in one bulk package,” said Mr O’Neill.

Aid 4 Animals in Distress, also referred to as Aid4Aid, started in 2015 as a WhatsApp group by animal lovers who were rescuing stray animals in Kirstenhof and surrounds, said Mr O’Neill.

“It was very quickly established that there was a need for another active animal-rescue organisation in the southern suburbs and Aid4Aid was officially formalised in April 2016 and obtained its NPO status in 2018.”

The organisation is run by volunteer committee members with full-time jobs.

With no formal premises, Aid4Aid relies on a network of foster homes, stretching across the southern suburbs and as far as Sea Point and Table View, for animals awaiting adoption and medical treatment is charged at welfare rates to the organisation by a vet in Tokai.

“We receive a large amount of animal alerts daily. These come in the form of WhatsApp messages, Facebook posts and tags, phone calls and emails. We also have both emergency and chit chat WhatsApp groups with over 200 local community based volunteers who post and respond to emergency situations when and where possible,” said Mr O’Neill.

While adoption fees are charged when animals are adopted, Mr O’Neill said they covered less than half of the average cost to the organisation for each animal, with the shortfall covered by fund-raising efforts, such as an annual bingo event at the IPA Timour Hall, quiz nights at Jack Black’s Taproom in Diep River and a calendar with pictures of rescue animals.

“We also rely heavily on public donations as well as corporate donations now that we have our Section 18a tax exemption. At times, we have to post funding appeals from which we receive community funding and donations. Without these, we would struggle to pay our monthly bills.” said Mr O’Neill.

Forms can be requested and returned to Aid4Aid by email at info@aid4aid.co.za or send a WhatsApp message to Leanne at 083 777 7528 or Grant at 072 474 0787.

These three puppies were rescued by Aid4Aid from Lotus River.