Rescued pets face starvation after food money is locked in Chase Bank
Hundreds of rescued domestic animals are staring at starvation at a relief centre in Nairobi because money meant for their food had been deposited at the Chase Bank that was put under receivership last week.
The Kenya Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (KSPCA) is now appealing to well-wishers to adopt the animals to ensure they don’t suffer if the organisation won’t access its funds soon.
According to KSPCA’s animal welfare director Jean Gilchrist, there are approximately 110 dogs, about 84 cats, 10 donkeys and six goats in the centre.
“We are in a bit of a mess,” Ms Gilchrist told Nairobi News. The stock the society has in its stores for dogs, she said, will be depleted in about a week.
“We have a store of food but it’s going down; and we still have to pay our creditors,” she said. “And of course we’ve also got to pay salaries at the end of the month for the staff. We’ve got 20 staff here.”
Ms Gilchrist noted that the society, based in Nairobi’s Karen Estate, had been saving its money at Chase Bank for the last two years and that they were about to make a withdrawal to keep the firm afloat as it had depleted money collected from fundraising.
“When we are not getting money from other sources like fundraising etc, we draw on this money. And we were going to have to draw on it … We were about to draw when the bank closed,” she said, adding that they had deposited their savings there to earn interest.
She said the deposit was not a lot of money “but it’s enough to run the society for about three, four months”.
The Nairobi News was drawn to KSPCA’s plight after an employee of the society lamented on Chase Bank’s Facebook page on the day the lender was put under the care of the Kenya Deposit Insurance Corporation.
“All money from KSPCA is gone. Please help us to feed the animals if you have a heart,” wrote the employee.
The society is remembered for offering shelter to the famous Mkombozi, a dog that in 2005 captured headlines after rescuing a new-born girl who had been dumped in Ngong Forest.
The dog, which had been ravaging for food, then carried the infant to safety. Mkombozi died at the facility in 2014.
While some of the animals adopted by KSPCA find homes soon after adoption, others, like donkeys, stay on till they die. The society depends on well-wishers to feed the animals.
“We rely on donations from fundraising; and we’ve had a very bad year so far. We were going to have to take some of our investment money [at Chase Bank] and we don’t when we will be able to do it,” Ms Gilchrist said.
KSPCA, a 91-year-old non-governmental organisation, offers food and shelter to abandoned animals before well-wishers can adopt them.
Recently, Ms Gilchrist said, they adopted dogs from a homestead of a man kicked out for not paying rent.
Following the Chase Bank closure, Ms Gilchrist is appealing for help to fend for the animals under their care.
“If we can have some food donations, that will be very good,” she said. She welcomed well-wishers to adopt some of them but she had a condition: “Good homes only.”