Alley Cat Allies sent this email to everyone they know today. Apparently the Smithsonian report is catching headlines everywhere, and just this week a resident cited the Smithsonian study in her argument against the cats saying it is the cause of no songbirds on the island. <I don’t ever recall hearing a songbird in Palm Beach, and I’ve worked there more than 20 years!>
PBIC was thrilled to selected as one of the charities to benefit from the Fourth Annual FTI Consulting Great Charity Challenge. It was presented by Fidelity Investments Saturday evening, January 26, 2013 at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington. The event, which raised $1.5 million for 34 charities in Palm Beach County, is a part of FTI’s Winter Equestrian Festival, which started Jan. 9 and runs to March 31.
Palm Beach Island Cats Inc.
PBIC prevents future generations of homeless cats by implementing the humane practice of Trap, Neuter and Return.
PBIC maintains the current population through daily feeding, watering and providing medical care as needed.
PBIC responds to all citizens’ concerns in order to achieve peaceful coexistence between our Town’s cats and residents.
The Town of Palm Beach has suffered with the problems caused by homeless cats since pioneer times. Cats fought loudly, male cats sprayed, starving cats were desperate for food, many cats were diseased and the population grew exponentially until we had 700 cats in colonies from our southern border all the way to the Inlet in the north.
Palm Beach Island Cats (PBIC) formed to humanely solve these problems with the nationally recognized program of Trap, Neuter, Return. Trapped cats are spayed and neutered, physically examined, vaccinated and micro-chipped before release. All noxious breeding behaviors cease and the population growth is brought under control. Daily feeding and watering is necessary to keep cats healthy, boost their immune system, keep the colonies together to gather at feeding time which allows monitoring to identify and treat any medical conditions.
The safety of the cats is also dependent on successfully responding to residents who are having problems. We are very lucky to have the services of Field Director Winifred Barber, a trained and experienced Vet Tech who possesses a calming manner that has won over many difficult people who don’t like cats.
PBIC has been the Town authorized program since July of 2009. Our professional work has stopped noisy breeding behavior, noticeably improved the health of the cats, is reducing the population and is winning support from both those who love cats and those who don’t. Years of fighting have been replaced with years of peace. We are now a mature, successful organization and are proud to say that we have been accepted as a partner by the Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League.
We have a $315,000 bare bones budget. We own no vehicles and have no office. Our administrator is a volunteer. We have put all our efforts into caring for the cats but to truly succeed we must now grow our Board of Directors and pool of donors. In June we hired Terry Lee Kaly, a professional financial consultant, who has held high positions with Girl Scouts of America, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, and American Humane Assoc. She is helping PBIC take the next step, by improving our administrative side and moving ahead with fund raising.
Our Board of Directors is Isabel Furlaud, Cheryl Giangrande, Susan Gibson, Michael Harris, David and Gail Leavitt, Sandy Lovett, Allen and Zelda Mason and Florence Metzger. Our honorary Board is Jane Grace and Paige Rense Noland and our Advisory Board is Dr. Brad Ochstein, Richard Anderson (Executive Director/CEO at Peggy Adams ARL) and Marcy Lahart, Attorney.
PBIC hosted a volunteer appreciation picnic at the Royal Poinciana Chapel in July providing an opportunity for the volunteers to network. This summer the Park Avenue memorial bricks were installed and this project is now complete. In October we had our most successful celebrity bartender event to date at Nick and Johnny’s with radio hosts Mo and Sally behind the bar. It was a well-attended and fun event. In December an end of year appeal was mailed as were the invitations to the January 9th High Tea at the Chesterfield.
On December 1st PBIC was the 4th charity selected from more than 200 applicants in the Fidelity Charity Challenge in Wellington guaranteed PBIC $10,000 along with the opportunity to win $150,000 in January. Support is growing. Wells Fargo became the first bank to underwrite one of our events and Searcy Denney, Scarola, Barnhart & Shipley is helping us now too. We have added 3 new Board members. The biggest news is that we may be accepted by a major organization supporting local charities which is all we can say about this for now.
2013 will be a pivotal year for PBIC, and PBIC is hosting it’s first gala at Club Collette in March; this will be a high water mark for our organization and our fundraising efforts.
All of this would not have been possible without the support given to us by the Council during our most desperate days. It meant our very survival. We thank the Town Council for their faith in PBIC and especially for your personal support. We promise to continue working hard to earn your respect.
January 10, 2013 [revised March 6, 2013]
For Immediate Release:
Palm Beach, FL – Pet lifestyle expert Sandy Robins spoke about the life and work of cats in the hospitality industry at Palm Beach Island Cats’s (PBIC) first “Cat in the Hat Tea,” held on January 9, 2013 in The Leopard Lounge at the Chesterfield Hotel. Robins, the author of Fabulous Felines: Heath and Beauty Secrets for the Pampered Cat and For The Love of Cats has appeared on MSNBC and The Weather Channel.