By Bejay Browne
AN open day will be held on Saturday to help raise money for food and the upkeep of a cat park in Tala, near Paphos.
The cat park is run by volunteers and the felines were moved there a while ago, down the road from their initial home close to the car park of Ayios Neophytos monastery.
Following the success of the first open day last year that raised over €2,500, volunteer Lynda Bulmer decided to organise a second event to raise more.
“This is our second open day, the first was in November and the money raised went towards spaying, neutering and feeding the cats.”
The open day will include fun and games for all, as well as a raffle with over 100 prizes.
Bulmer said that the felines roam the park and have plenty of shade. Volunteers are headed up by manager Dawn Foote who feed and water the cats and also do their best to ensure all of them are in good health. The park has also become popular with visitors from both Cyprus and abroad, with the monastery cats gaining recognition world-wide.
Bulmer, who lives in Emba, has been involved with the cat park for the last three years and has six cats of her own, all of which are rescues. She volunteers three days a week.
“We are looking after 450 cats and 20 kittens. But as the season is only just starting we know that the number of kittens will grow, as people have just stared to dump them in boxes and carrier bags.”
The volunteer said that just a few days ago someone cut a hole in the park’s perimeter fence to dump a cat inside and some of the parks cats got out.
Last year, through fundraising efforts, the volunteers managed to spay and neuter all of the nearly 200 kittens.
The park is always in need of volunteers and food, that costs around €400 a week. For the first time collection points are now available at Papantoniou supermarkets in the centre of Paphos and at Kato Paphos.
There are also collection points at Buy-Rite in Kissonerga and Phillipos supermarket in Coral Bay.
Many of the popular local entertainers support the work of the volunteers and also organise fundraising events, with a number scheduled throughout the year. Updates are available at the Tala monastery cat’s Facebook page, said Bulmer.
Entertainment on the open day will be provided by the Cyprus Morris dancers, as well as a Tai Chi demonstration, a fashion show by the ‘Clothing Lounge’ and singing by TLC school choir. ‘Pafos Zoo’ will also present an exotic animal display.
There will also be a ‘kitten corner’ where people can either adopt or sponsor a kitten. It costs 30 euros for six months and 50 euros for twelve months, said the volunteer. More than 40 stalls will be selling handicrafts, clothes, jewellery and more. There will also be electric bikes to try out.
The open day is free to all from 10.30am to 3pm at the Ayios Neophytos Monastery café in Tala.
For information call Lynda on 99841142.