There are approximately 7 million cats in Canada, and it’s estimated that 600,000 are in animal shelters. Many of these sick, injured or abandoned cats are at risk and need homes.

Toronto Cat Rescue (TCR), founded in 1994, has a core mission of saving those cats in the GTA and Kitchener/Waterloo areas. “We rescue about 2,700 cats a year and adopt out about 250 cats a month,” says TCR Executive Director Belinda Vandersluis. “We think we are the largest volunteer cat rescue of our kind in Canada.”

The organization partners with municipal shelters and humane societies to rehome cats at risk of being considered unadoptable. “Those cats come to us and — instead of being euthanized — are put through our program of medical care and socialization in a foster home until they are ready to be placed in a loving home,” says Vandersluis.

Now in their 25th year, TCR’s vision is focused on the future. They’re aiming for sustainable, local growth over the next three years, then they want to share their programs and systems throughout the rest of Ontario and across the country. To do that, they need more volunteers, more donors, more adopters, and more foster homes. “We are a network of 400 foster homes and over a 1,000 volunteers,” says Vandersluis. “There’s a volunteer role for every person and many of these roles can be done remotely from home.”

For Vandersluis, a world where every cat has a home is possible: “Our model is scalable and portable, so the sky’s the limit.”

Visit Toronto Cat Rescue for more information.