Marcy Klein and Rick Schaeffer, our beloved benefactors from across the Atlantic, have been supporting us every single month almost ever since we started! They live in Rochester, NY, and look after a large colony of cats in their own hometown – trapping and neutering, trying to find homes where possible, and feeding and creating warm hideouts for the cats to survive the harsh winter.
Here, they tell us how they decided to get involved with helping Greek cats as well!
What made you decide to support Nine Lives? Especially as you are already so active helping cats in your own community back home!
We love to visit Greece but are very distressed to see the hungry and sick cats everywhere. Life is so hard for the stray cats in downtown Athens. We knew we had to do something! We first learned of Nine Lives through a newspaper ad, and contacted you right away. We are so happy to be able to help feed, heal and neuter the cats. We do it in honor of all the beloved strays we have adopted over the years, and who have enriched our lives so much.
You visit Athens regularly and do cat-tours with us to meet the cats that your generous donations help to get vet treatment and meals. When you meet these cats, how do you feel?
When we meet the cats being fed in Athens, we have mixed feelings… joy that they are being cared for so well, and sadness that they face dangers every day, and do not have the safe homes they all deserve. We also have immense admiration for your group, and all you do to make a difference in the lives of the cats. It’s truly a Herculean task!
Are there any particular cats you have helped through Nine Lives who have struck a particularly strong chord with you?
We were so pleased to contribute recently to the Operation Omonia fundraising effort which means that cats in the very neediest area of central Athens are being helped to have healthier, better lives and fewer kittens will be born in those alleys and derelict buildings. And, during our most recent visit, we took home a very happy story with us: we were having dinner at a taverna in Plaka with Evgenia and Cordelia from Nine Lives, and a lovely friendly calico kitten climbed onto Rick’s lap. She lay there purring away as he stroked her, and enjoyed a fish from his plate. It worried us that she was so very friendly and vulnerable – and the Nine Lives girls were worried as they knew that the previous feline occupants of that square (which had been spayed/neutered by Nine Lives) had fallen victim to poison last year. We were so very happy to learn that they took the kitten into foster care, and she is now thriving in a wonderful home where she is much-loved!