ONE WEEK from now, the wheels go up on the most ambitious rescue SPCA International has ever undertaken.
We were founded in 2006 with a simple mission: To advance the safety and well-being of animals.
It’s no secret that honoring this mission can fill your heart one day and break it the next.
Today, as our rescue partners around the world prepare for this monumental flight to finally take place, we are proud to share the events and spotlight the many efforts that have set the stage for animal rescue history to be made.
In the chaotic days before NATO forces pulled out of Afghanistan, the team at Kabul Small Animal Rescue valiantly tackled the daunting task of trying to coordinate an evacuation of the 130 cats and dogs in their care.
As the situation became more tense, a passionate plea from KSAR founder, Charlotte Maxwell-Jones, went viral and triggered a response from multiple organizations (SPCAI included). With time running out, teams worked around the clock tapping every resource at their disposal. Despite everyone’s best efforts, hopes were dashed when, at the 11th hour, dogs were released to fend for themselves on the airport property; the cats, having never made it in, were brought back to the KSAR shelter and Charlotte was escorted back to her home.
We were all devastated, but we knew that these cats and dogs were still counting on us and we refused to give up.
Throughout the fall, helped by SPCAI donations (thank you!), KSAR was able to continue supporting the ongoing care of the animals and make efforts to rescue the dogs that had been released at the airport. While that took place, we worked relentlessly with Charlotte and our longstanding partner, War Paws, to formulate a new plan to evacuate the animals. With the US CDC suspension on canine imports from over 100 countries (Afghanistan included), we knew Canada would be our best option.
As winter loomed, a new coalition with War Paws, Marley’s Mutts, RainCoast Dog Rescue Society and Thank DOG I Am Out (TDIAO) was formed to set up a temporary facility in Vancouver, British Columbia, that could receive almost 300 animals still in KSAR’s care. This dedicated group worked non-stop, following strict guidelines, fully documenting every animal for import and setting up a facility that meets every regulation in record time.
We are proud to announce that after working day and night with our partners for the last two months, the facility is ready and we have a chartered plane booked to make the journey. Experienced staff and over 200 volunteers are on standby, a full-time veterinarian is under contract, and countless adopters and rescue organizations are lining up to give these animals the safe homes they deserve.
We cannot stress enough how challenging this process has been. How thankful we are to have incredible companies like Signature Flight Support, Modu-Loc, and King of Floors in our corner – it would have been impossible to do this without your support. But most importantly, it is animal lovers like YOU, making donations big and small, that have made this a reality. THANK YOU!
Our work won’t stop once the plane touches down in Vancouver. Our precious cargo of cats and dogs will require round-the-clock care as they embark on the next chapter of their lives here in North America. Please contact us for more information on how to volunteer, foster or adopt.
“Happily Ever After”
Writing fairytale endings for animals was what fueled our creation in 2006, and it’s what drives SPCA International today.
We are very proud of our role in this historic rescue and how far we’ve come as an organization – as always, your support makes it all possible. Thank you!