Craig Street Cats is keeping its name, but switching locations.
The Wolseley-based cat rescue organization is poised open a formal 2,400-sq. ft. adoption centre at 489 Madison St. in St. James sometime in May.
"It feels amazing. There’s a feeling of excitement and anticipation," said founder Lynne Scott.
Scott has been helping manage the feral cat population in Wolseley and the rest of the city from her home since 2007.
Dozens of kennels occupy the former schoolteacher’s living room and dining room, currently home to about 90 of the hundreds of cats the organization handles. Much of the house is filled with supplies like litter, food, scrap newspaper and extra kennels.
Last year, Scott lost out on a $150,000 grant to help move the organization out of her home.
"Getting a grant would have allowed us to do everything the right away to start with," Scott said.
"If we wait until we have enough (money of our own), we’ll never do it. I had some very generous donations come in early in the year, and decided to put those towards a deposit."
Scott is hoping to sell 1,000 virtual bricks for $25 each to help generate funds to help build the new centre. Donors will have their contributions acknowledged on a "builder’s wall" at the front of the building.
Funds raised will help Scott build five large cat enclosures, along with a separate kitten room. The move means the organization will be able to handle more cats and allow for a small retail section to help generate income.
Consistent operating hours will also help the shelter increase its exposure for adoptions, volunteers and donors, Scott said.
"It’s taken its toll. I’m approaching complete exhaustion," she said, adding she’d like to grow her regular volunteer base from two dozen to about 50.
"Being able to close the doors here at night and go home and actually be home and not still at work will be a godsend."
Neighbouring Craig Street resident Carolin Vesely said Scott’s work has made a difference in the community and is thrilled to see the hard work pay off.
"I think most people can’t imagine living with double digit cats," she said. "Having been in there to feed kittens and cuddle cats, I think it’s better for everybody. I hope people continue to be supportive."
For more information on Craig Street Cats, visit http://cats.wolseleygirl.com or call 223-6652.