By Maria Jos� Ja�n Jimenez
Kimba was founded in 1872 and is the oldest protectora in Spain. Originally Kimba was dedicated to caring only for plants, but as the years passed it began to take in abandoned animals. Nine partners acquired a 5000 square meter piece of land in order to be able to house the animals that they were taking in. Thanks to a lot of hard work, and following a dream, they managed to build 33 kennels and 5 quarantine stations to accommodate the lives of these animals. They are conveniently equipped with dormitories and eating areas for the animals, and presently the number of dogs and cats is in the vicinity of 180 dogs (after rescuing all of the dogs from the Puerto Real dog pound) and 12 cats, which is way above our ideal capacity. But it is impossible for us not to help and rescue animals that are suffering.
Through financial contributions from members, and most of them from abroad, we were able to build more kennels at Kimba, and we were also able to build a wall around the perimeter to offer more security and better well being for our animals. Before building the wall we had serious problems with hunters shooting at our dogs from outside the old chain link fence that we used to have.
The shelter was given the name "KIMBA" in memory of a lioness that once lived here at the shelter.
Unfortunately there are hundreds of dogs, cats and other animals who every season are abandoned by their owners and left to fend for themselves on just any street corner. But we aren't able to rescue all of them; we have neither the room nor the financial means. We receive no type of official subsidies due to the fact that we have a NO KILL policy, in other words we are not a dog pound.
Those of us who look for families for the dogs (Adoption Group) consist of 4 people: Alba, Elena (two 22 year old young women who have been with us for 3 years), Jos� Manuel and myself, who have been here for 8 years.
We have created various working groups
FOSTER CARE GROUP:
Their function is to take into their homes and care for the puppies and kittens less than two months of age that belong to Kimba, while waiting to find a family for them or waiting to integrate them into the shelter once they are big enough and strong enough (more than 2 months old). This group also offers foster care to our animals who have had surgery so that they can spend their post operative time in a home.
Follow up on the animals who have been adopted to make sure they are in good care and that they are adapting well to their new homes.
Their job is to find families for the animals who live temporarily at the shelter, making sure that they go to good homes.
PUBLIC RELATIONS GROUP:
These folks handle all of the public relations, put together campaigns for Kimba, they run the information booths, and make arrangements for our participation at various events.
This group is in charge of the lectures and conferences, and they participate in round tables etc. having to do with both animals and with the environment.
GROUNDS CARE GROUP:
See to it that Kimba functions 365 days of the year. It does so because of the unselfish volunteers who tend to the maintenance of the animals, feedings, cleaning the kennels, administering of veterinary treatments, repairing any damages, and making improvements on the facility, etc. There is one employee (the only paid employee) who goes every day Monday through Friday in the mornings to do this work. Aside from him, various volunteers often go to give him a hand. Saturday is volunteer day, and we are all there from 11:00am until 8:00pm working to maintain the grounds.