Feeling Thankful

It’s the day after Thanksgiving and I wanted to take a few moments to say thank you. Storm is doing well, eating a lot, recovering from her surgery, and looking after her babies. Rain, Cloud, and Hurricane are one-week old today and doing fantastic. They’re gaining weight just as they should be and look like healthy, roly-poly kittens. I’m grateful for that. I’ve been posting photos on Instagram and Facebook.

Our fundraiser last weekend went really well and brought in almost $400. There are lots of new masks out in the community now and several kitties got new toys to play with. Two former fosters even got the two crocheted cat beds! My daughter is home now (and is also a board member) so together we may do one more pop-up for a couple of hours on December 12th. Stay tuned for details about that. Chris Frost wrote up a nice article about us and the event, too.

We’ve been pushing to bring our total fundraising up to $10,000 by year’s end so that we’re more than ready to launch our retail space as soon as it’s safe to do so. As of today, we have a little over $5500 in the bank and in cash and another $1650 promised to us. We’re hoping that one donor’s $1000 donation will be matched by their employer. All said, that would bring us to about $8000! That is so amazing and we are humbled and inspired by the support and generosity shown by our community.

Thank you for supporting us, for following us, and for helping our dream come true. We can’t wait to open our space and start helping more cats find their furever homes!

November Updates

posted in: Education, Fundraising | 0

This time last year we were ready to start forming the nonprofit but hadn’t even started a draft of our bylaws, an essential first step. We weren’t approved as a legitimate 501(c)3 nonprofit organization until March of this year (with approval dating back to early January). Here we are now in November, and we have come a long way for a very new nonprofit organization trying to fundraise during a worldwide pandemic and various stages of a state shutdown here in California!

A few encouraging statistics:

  1. We’ve had 64 people (that we know of!) support us through financial donations, participating in fundraisers, and/or in-kind donations.
  2. We started with seed money of $130 the day we opened our bank account and now have about $3600 in there.
  3. We’ve sold at least 94 masks since August.
  4. We have over 300 Facebook followers and over 330 Instagram followers.
  5. We’ve fostered 15 cats and kittens.
  6. We’ve had 2 newspaper interviews.
  7. We’ve spoken to 1 volunteer mentor from SCORE and 1 commercial real estate broker for advice as we move forward.

So what’s to come? We’d like to make a big push and raise $3000 between now and the end of the year. Donations to Cassie’s Cats are tax-deductible so we hope our supporters will consider that as they make end-of-year donations. We need our mission to be shared with others in Ventura and the surrounding communities as well as further out, to anyone who shares our values and wants to see cats and kittens finding their “fur”ever homes! Rent in midtown Ventura is not cheap but we want to be visible and attract as many visitors and potential adopters as we can.

Ways to donate:

  1. Use the yellow PayPal button at the bottom of any page
  2. Mail a check (use the contact form for our current mailing address)
  3. Send us a donation through Venmo (Jennifer-Thompson-75)
  4. Make a purchase in our fundraising shop

As always, thank you for your continued support as we work to make this dream a reality!

October Updates

posted in: Education | 0

October! It’s been about 7 months now since we received our official nonprofit status and started getting things rolling. It’s also been about 7 months now since the coronavirus shut so many things down. Ventura County is moving from the purple (most restrictive) tier to the red tier, which is good news. There are still two more tiers to move to but it’s encouraging to see things going in the right direction.

Our Facebook and Instagram followings continue to grow. We have almost 270 Facebook followers now and about 290 Instagram followers. If you use either of those platforms please share us and help us reach more cat lovers in Ventura and beyond.

We have added a fundraising “thermometer” to our Fundraisers page so that everyone can see how things are going as we approach opening the lounge. We estimate needing roughly $3000-$4000 per month to run the lounge so we’ve set a goal of raising $10,000 to try and get 3 months of operating expenses in the bank. There won’t be any salaries (at least for a while); all work will be done by volunteers. Money raised will go toward care and safety for the cats we take in plus rent, insurance, utilities, Internet access, etc.

Poppy and Cali went back to Greyfoot so that Cali could have her milk fully dry up in anticipation of being spayed and so that Poppy could be a friend to another foster there named Conrad. Conrad was found on the same property and they are probably cousins. They’ve been adopted together and will go home after their neuter surgeries. Whitney and Sequoia are still here and applications are being accepted for them now, too. Hopefully Ventura County is finally seeing a light at the end of the kitten season tunnel.

September Updates

posted in: Education | 0

We’ve been busy since the last update! Toby and Kelly stayed with us for a few weeks and in that time completely came out of their shells and gained some good weight too. After their spay/neuter surgeries they were each adopted into great homes. It always feels good to have a happily ever after story to tell about our fosters.

About 3 weeks ago we took in a mama cat (Cali) and her three kittens (Sequoia, Whitney, and Poppy). We’re fostering for Greyfoot Cat Rescue and it’s been a delightful experience so far. Joan runs a great organization and I’d encourage you to check them out. Cali has had multiple worm issues but she’s finally past all of that which means she can start putting on some weight. She’s been an excellent mother to her three babies but all that nursing takes its toll. Thankfully, she’s healthy now and has a chance to live a good long life once her babies are weaned.

Since our last post, we’ve raised a little over $500 in fundraisers, donations, and in-kind donations. Mask sales have been phenomenal – we’ve sold nearly 50 so far and still have plenty on hand!

Earlier this week we took a look at a potential space downtown. It was fun to step inside and visualize it as a full-fledged cat lounge! I’ve got a list going of potential spaces. If Ventura County can continue the trend it’s on in terms of daily case counts, testing, and hospitalizations we’ll be that much closer to feeling much safe about opening to the public and being able to maintain a business.

If you have a chance to pick up a copy of The Ventura Breeze we have a nice write-up in the September 9th issue, on page 10. It’s very exciting to see our story in the paper and it will be even more exciting to finally announce a grand opening!

This Saturday is our meet-and-greet at Thille Park in Ventura. It’s an informal event from 9:30-11:00. I’ll be there in a red hat with a cat on it and either a Cassie’s Cats t-shirt or sweatshirt, depending on the weather. Masks and physical distancing will be required. I hope you’ll come out to say hello, meet me (Jennifer), and possibly go home with something for your cat or yourself! I’ll be bringing goodies from the shop and will be able to take credit and debit cards as well as cash and checks. See you there!

Mama Cali
Whitney, Poppy, and Sequoia (5 weeks old)

Welcome to 4 New Fosters!

We brought in a mama cat and her three kittens today. They had been living outside and a caring woman looked out for them and then reached out to have them taken into a rescue. No more babies for this mama, and no babies ever for her three kittens! This is what it takes to try and get a handle on the cat/kitten overpopulation problem in Ventura County.

Mama Cali is a tortie and looks to be an excellent mom to her babies. All three kittens are plump and adorable. Names and gender verification are coming. We’re guessing the kittens are around 2.5 weeks old.

Welcome to our home, sweet family.

Mama Cali with her two gray tabbies and one orange tabby