We’re sure you’ve noticed the increasing number of stray animals within your neighborhood, but have you ever bothered to help one?
This story of a lola from Barangka, Marikina who has been taking care of homeless cats since the late ’80s will inspire you to open your hearts and homes to animals in need. We would like to thank Cha Castelo for sharing this with us.
“Hi animal lovers!
This is Aling Anita del Rosario, a neighborhood cat lady who is presently taking care of 20-30 adult cats/kittens. She has been doing this compassionate act since late 1980s-1990s up to this day, because according to her own words, “I do it out of mercy”.
I first chanced upon her at the community stairs leading to ADMU (where she used to work as a Secretary for one of the university’s Chairman) feeding around 5+ cats bringing the food from her house (she lives nearby) to the foot of the stairs. At that time, she did not ask for help from anybody. Not even for cat food or anything. And until this day, three years later, she still is not asking for help. But seeing her plight, I knew she needed help whether she likes it or not. She is now on her retirement years living alone (she’s single by the way) with all her cats, tending to them night and day.
There will be many times that kids and unidentified neighbors will be leaving newborn kitties to her doorstep thinking her house is a “cat shelter”. From my conversations with her, she will tell me: “Yung iba nakapikit pa iniiwan dito sa gate, kawawa sila kasi namamatay dahil wala yung nanay” or say something like, “May mga nag-iiwan ng newborn sa may basketball court, tinatapon. Minsan yung mga bata hinahagis at pinaglalaruan.”
Every time I will hear her stories about these poor cats, I can not help but stop her because I can not hear it any longer. And every time I would visit her to check on her and the cats, I would strongly feel that help should be on its way the soonest. And I can not do it alone. All the tough work–transporting these cats for spaying/neutering, veterinary care, fostering/adopting…should be in place.
My donations of human food and basic first aid for Aling Anita and the cats are not enough to have a long term solution to their lives. Because every day, every year, Aling Anita gets older, and (un)healthier. She has a bad athritis and would walk with a bent back (kuba) that makes her move slow. She told me she wants to retire in her Mindoro hometown. But because she has all these cats, she cannot do it. When I asked her, iiwanan po ba ninyo sila pag-uwi ninyo? Her reply: a short and direct “NEVER”.
That is why I am here writing her story. I would want to share her story, in the high hopes that a very concerned animal welfare group will pay her cats a visit and help her fulfill her wish to go to Mindoro and spend her remaining golden years in her hometown. And as for the cats, they rely heavily on Aling Anita (she spends from her own pocket, by the way) for food, water, shelter. for love and care.
Without Aling Anita, I really don’t know what could happen to them, maybe some if not all, will be picked up by the City Vet and euthanize them all–Aling Anita said that there was an instance that allegedly, the people of the City Vet secretly got some of her cats, “pinausukan” at “binenta” sa mga Med students.
To the individuls and groups who are willing to go out of their way, to extend that extra mile, please send me a message and I can coordinate your help to Aling Anita. Thank you for reading her story and please help in sharing/spreading Aling Anita’s story.”
Here’s a video of Aling Anita.
Here are the photos of some of the cats under her care.
The world needs more people like this lola.
If you wish to help Aling Anita in any way, kindly contact Cha Castelo.
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