I’m Vincent D. Cat and here to make you happy! You are HEROES! You work hard every day and you deserve to smile every day! Those of you working to save us animals hear so very many very sad things. And there’s lots of very glad things too and that’s what we talk about here! All pawsitive all the time! I want my friends to be happy and smile and know there’s a lot of good - including YOU - in this world!! Be kind and pass it on! Please send me your Good New and Fun Stuff to share, personal or global. Let’s keep it fun and interactive!! After all, if we couldn’t laugh, we would all go insane! Vincent@RikkisRefuge.org
http://bit.ly/VoteVincent Rikkis Refuge, Orange, VA, USA
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Sorry I've been away. I had to let mom use my ‘puter. She had to work day and night to get the essays done for CFC. I, of course, had to sit on mom's feet to keep her warm, and that's been a very difficult job these last couple of days.
The Combined Federal Campaign is extremely important for funding Rikki's Refuge. The report will also be used for the Commonwealth Virginia Campaign, CVC. These programs allow federal employees and state employees to make donations through payroll deductions. Donating just a dollar a pay period, will take care of an animal for a day. If only 500,000 people made a commitment like that, one dollar a week, we be able to take care of everybody at the refuge!
Not quite that many people sign up, though many are much more generous than one dollar every paycheck. And it all adds up to about 15 percent of our funding every year. So it's really important. Because if mom doesn't get her reports done, then we can't be on the list for CFC or CVC giving, and that means it would be my job to beg you for that extra 15 percent.
A great big huge thank you to Kathy who stayed up all nights working with mom, and spent every second she could during the days, and who is, at this very moment, working on making copies, collating, tabulating and binding.
Kathy has been with Rikki's Refuge almost since the very very beginning. Even before I came to Rikki's Refuge. The very first meeting of Rikki's Refuge and the planning for how to start cleaning up the property and preparing to become a sanctuary was on October 31st 1998 in Fairfax County Virginia. Mom had said everybody should dress up as animals for the event, which was to be held in a public library. Fairfax County cable TV was very excited, and wanted to come out and film the meeting. But when they arrived at the meeting and found that most everybody had refused to dress up they lost interest and left. So just think, if everybody was as crazy as my mom, Rikki's Refuge might've been on TV from day one!
Anyway, at that meeting is scheduled workdays was planned. The very first work day would be November 7th, 1998. Dozens upon dozens of people said they would show up to help. Mom passed out directions to the farm, 86 miles away, that was to become Rikki's Refuge. Three people ended up calling mom to ask if they could ride with her, to Tamaki, Janet and Mickey. Once they arrived and began to look around at the rundown property in the yard filled with trash, Joe popped out of the cornfield and said, “Is this the place to become the Cat Farm?”
At first Tamaki, Janet, Mickey and mom thought he was a squatter who was probably gonna kill them all. But it turned out he'd heard about the refuge from a friend who worked with someone who had come to the meeting, and he was there to help.
A few other folks straggled in during the day. Some of them looking at the 30 some odd old appliances in the front yard, the trash and junk strewn all over the place, the rundown, falling down barn filled with junk, the acres and acres of corn; and they began to laugh, and said, “You can never do anything with this place! You'll never be able to do anything here! Why bother trying?” And they left.
Well, the ones who stayed, manage to clean all that up and go on to build what you know today as Rikki's Refuge.
Many years after Rikki's was running, one of the day one quitters wandered down the driveway. He asked if it had ever become an animal sanctuary and mom said take a look around. He said, “WOW, I was here for the first work party, and I saw so much work ahead but I figured nothing would ever happen, so I left. I'm really amazed you guys stuck it out and built something here.”
Well anyway, to carry on with the story of Kathy. She wasn’t there for the first work party in November of 1998. She hadn't yet heard of the farm that was to become Rikki's Refuge. She was worried about a contained feral colony that was in Stafford. The owner of the land and the colony was moving, selling the property, and wanted the cats gone. About 30 feral kitties. Kathy had been volunteering to help clean and take care of these kitties, and was now really worried about where they would move to. She prayed for an answer.
St. Anthony came to her in a dream and said Ricky will look after your animals. She had no idea what that meant and she had never heard of Rikki's Refuge. She began searching on the Internet and found some reference to Rikki's Refuge and feral cats. She picked up the phone and called. By Christmas of 1998 Kathy was an active member, on the Board of Directors and had begun the planning of Cat House Number One.
Once we got possession of the farmhouse, by politely convincing the tenets that came with the property that it really was time for them to move on, Kathy was one of the few people who would spend days or weeks at the refuge to ensure that Rikki's Refuge was off to a successful start. Sleeping in a sleeping bag on the floor in the only remotely usable room in the dilapidated farmhouse, whose only source of heat was a falling apart wood stove that would burst out great gulps of black smoke, whose broken windows were covered with newspapers, whose roof was leaking, and which had no hot water, no phone lines; we were talking serious rustic here.
Well you know the story from there, how all the volunteers worked hard, made the house livable, started to build animal areas, and now today we have the housing for 1250 animals of 22 species. It's still pretty rustic, but the hoomans who've been here from the beginning, and to all of us animals, it sure seems pretty luxurious!
I really want to thank all of you who sent me stories and testimonies to use with our CFC report. Soon I will start to get them up online, and share them with you, is altogether, it made a really lovely heartwarming story, all about what Rikki's Refuge does, not only for the animals, but for all sizes and shapes of hoomans too.
You especially made me purr when I read the stories about what Good Morning Good News means to you. I am so happy that I am able to make so many of you smile, and have something to look forward to every day. That's my goal in life, is to make everybody happy and smile! Well, and to make sure we all have Fancy Feast!
Did you know that Good Morning Good News just sort of started by accident one day? I was gonna say hi to my Facebook friends and I noticed so many people had such sad things to say. It was one of those bad earth days when some terrible disaster had happened, a terrible earthquake somewhere. Other friends were said about different stories in the news. And some had personal sad news. It just seemed that everything was so sad and unhappy.
And so I just put up a note saying Good Morning Good News, and a good thing happening at Rikki's and something good happening on the planet. And everybody said thank you. And then the next morning people said, “hey Vincent, give us some Good News!” Some of my friends who are on Facebook and on e-mail asked me to share with folks who were just on e-mail and didn't have Facebook accounts. And I did. And that's how it all got started.
Sorry to be so short today, back with more tomorrow!
I Love YOU
PS You tell me what you want! Email me at Vincent@RikkisRefuge.org with instructions to change your subscription: additions, deletions or modifications! Subscriptions: Vincent’s VIPs - up to the second alerts about issues at Rikki’s Refuge for those who care and want to be intimately involved. Scheduled as needed. Good Morning Good News - a little something to get you going in the mornings, for those of you who want to keep smiling with us! Scheduled daily. Hairballs - so you know what’s coming up at Rikki’s! Scheduled weekly.
Rikki's Refuge, supported solely by private donations, houses over 1200 animals of 22 species. On line at http://bit.ly/Give-a-gift-to-Rikkis Checks, money orders, cash, items at Rikki's Refuge, PO Box 1357, Orange VA 22960
Rikki's Refuge is owned and operated by Life Unlimited of Virginia, Inc., an IRS 501(c)(3) not-for-profit Virginia Corporation, tax-id 54-1911042. Combined Federal Campaigns #77674, Commonwealth of Virginia Campaign #3163, PetsMart Charities #1377. A financial statement is available upon written request from the State Office of Consumer Affairs.
Learn more www.RikkisRefuge.org and help spread the good word, tell everyone you know about Rikki’s Refuge