THE owners of Brinsley Animal Sanctuary are hoping to raise more than ever at an annual Christmas open day this weekend to help fund a new hospital unit.
Jon Beresford and Beth Hewis are hoping to raise over £1,000, so money can go towards the sanctuary’s new hospital unit, as well as general running costs.
Jon and Beth, who take in pets, wildlife and farm animals, have to raise £30,000 a year to stay afloat, and the two open days held each year at Christmas and in the summer, are the key events in their fundraising calendars.
“It’s very hard,” said Jon.
“We have to raise £2,500 per month on average and that is done by literally continuous fundraising events, collections and really pulling all the stops out.”
The couple are keen to raise as much as possible this year because they have just received planning permission to turn their utility room into an animal hospital, where they will be able to treat and diagnose the animals with minor ailments, to save on vet bills.
Jon said people make donations, but it is ‘generally fast or famine’.
“One day we will get a cheque for a few hundred pounds and then the next we will be struggling,” he said.
“Overall, we just keep out heads above water.
“To take in just one cat in costs us £150 to spray, worm and microchip it.”
Jon also revealed he has too many animals coming in and not enough going out.
He turns away 20 rabbits a week and regularly gets cats just left on his doorstep – sometimes squashed into rabbit hutches.
Another problem, is the current craze of micro pigs with people often not wanting them any more when they have grown too big.
The couple recently rescued a full-size pig from a tiny bungalow.
This Sunday, people will have the chance to look around the sanctuary, which is usually closed to the public.
There will be crafts, gifts, merchandise, tombola, Santa’s grotto, games, cakes, hot dogs, mushy peas and many other stalls at the sanctuary in Hobsic Close this Sunday between 11am and 4pm.
Admission is £1 and children are free.