After six years as a rescue facility, we suffered a few blows that we couldn't rescue ourselves from and had to close our doors.
In a small community, it becomes all the more important... even crucial... in order for a rescue shelter to be successful, that many people participate in the many tasks required to maintain and manage a shelter. Simply put, it isn't something one person can do alone for very long.
After the initial enthusiasm died down, that's exactly what happened to HiPAWS. One person was keeping it open, managing all the little and large tasks, handling the rescues, the adoptions, and the inevitable running around.
Gas is too expensive for that now, and the transports had to stop.
But the straw that broke the camel's back came when our lawyer made off with all our funds. It took almost 2 years, but we got some of it back... but, too late; our doors were already closed. And we who own the little house we donated for use as a shelter had to sell our living quarters and move to a remote, rural location.
The money that was earmarked for our application to get a non-profit status, also known as a 501(c)3, was gone, and we had to spend personal funds to keep the shelter open. Inevitably, the costly nature of shelter management led to our personal breakdown. Selling and moving were the only options left.
Well, one more option was that we could have put down all the animals we had left... all 85 of them... but the crazy part of that was that we didn't even have the funds to pay a veterinarian to do that! Besides, killing healthy, happy animals goes against our grain. So we had to find homes for everyone pretty fast. Some found new homes as house cats, but most of them are now living as farm cats. You can see photos of these wonderful kitties, plus a few dogs, under the About pages.