Jumping off the Cliff

When I quit my full time job and let go of my benefits to pursue running a non profit, I felt like I was diving off stable ground into who knows what that was lying below. Two years earlier, I had charged over a thousand dollars to my credit card to set up a 501c3 and it was time to give the rescue my full attention.
The kittens in need are plentiful , that part of the business is simple. In my dream world, they would arrive with a tiny suitcase full of cash, a veterinarian and a lifetime supply of food. In reality, they arrive with less than nothing and needing more than everything. Logic tells me that there is no way to provide all the care every kitten needs with the resources available. Each kitten’s tiny purr tells me that I don’t have a choice.
At any given time, I will have balances at up to three different veterinary hospitals, four veterinary supply companies, three credit cards, two food manufacturers and countless other small bills. Rent, utilities, basic supplies are whole separate set of expenses. When a kitten enters the rescue, what they need is ordered, veterinary care is administered and necessities are provided regardless of available finances.
It’s a recipe for disaster and yet here I am, almost four years later, with a fully functioning, non profit kitten rescue. I make little to no salary, my trusty subaru is 13 years old and has been used more than once as collateral for an emergency loan. I will never buy a house or become wealthy.
That said, I am happier than I have ever been. I get to work with kittens EVERY DAY. Amazing, wonderful, supportive people donate their time, money and skills and open up their homes, making it possible for kittens to be rescued. My family and friends have all pitched in making cards, creating auction items, building our website and volunteering at fundraisers. Facebook and WordPress provide a no cost way to spread our mission to people all over the world. With every heartbreaking case that shows up at the door, hundreds of people lift me up with their comments and generosity.
It may not be a glamorous life, but I wouldn’t choose to live any other way. Bring on the kittens!

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