Shelter Spotlight: Syrian Association for Rescuing Animals

By Emma Koeniger, SPCA International Staff

In April 2016, SPCA International received a plea from a refugee family in Canada. They had been unable to bring their beloved family dog, Fox, with them when they fled Syria. They were desperate to get him out. We immediately knew we had to help, and so we undertook what seemed like an impossible mission. 

During the planning stages of rescuing Fox, we came across the Syrian Association for Rescuing Animals (SARA). It seemed improbable to find a team of animal rescuers left in the war-torn country, but this amazing group refused to abandon the neglected animals of Damascus City.  With their help, SPCA International was able to make this refugee family’s dream come true. Fox was rescued and reunited with them in Montreal, Canada, in September 2016.

SARA is one of the only known animal welfare groups still left in the country. With an all-volunteer team they rescue and rehome animals that have seen the worst of war. When SPCA International started working with SARA for Fox’s rescue, SARA did not have a shelter facility, they’re resources were depleted and they had no consistent funding. Thanks to the unwavering support of SPCA International donors, we were able to award SARA a significant financial grant. That grant has allowed them to open a shelter facility – a dream that seemed impossible to them only months earlier.

Here is an exciting video tour of the land and buildings they have secured thanks to the SPCAI grant:



The SPCA International grant will allow SARA renovate this facility and cover the rent for an entire year. This outstanding organization that has filled a need for the homeless, injured and abused animals of Syria will finally have a shelter. It will help them serve even more animals caught in the middle of civil war.  We are honoured to be their partner in it.