Monday, May 20, 2013

The Biggest Problems Are yet to Come

This year's round of shelter repairs is currently well underway. Paving of the sheltered area under the eaves is finally finished and we’ve already undertaken our next challenge - fixing the only cat room in the front yard. Not until the workers began to
rip out the ceiling were we aware of its true condition and the real reason why that huge bump had formed in it months ago. The old saying “You never know what lies beneath” takes on a whole new meaning during repairs at Felix shelter.
Like all of the other auxiliary rooms, the one in question has originally been made of reeds and rammed earth, with random bricks scattered here and there. The ceiling sagged down because the roof was leaking water and not only that, the rammed earth and reeds
became wet and heavy, which has caused one of the beams carrying the weight of the roof to frighteningly bend down in the middle. That particular beam lies on top of the walls and supports the structural roof beams so it can't be replaced, as the entire structure
would fall down otherwise. Nevertheless, it can stay as it is without causing any additional problems. OSB sheathing has already been placed above, and an insulating layer of Styrofoam will be attached beneath. After that, special nets will be adhered to
both the inner walls and the ceiling and Bavalit, which is a kind of mortar, will be applied afterwards. New electrical installations of cables, plugs and wall sockets will replace the old ones and the best news is that all of the costs of renovating that room in the front
yard are covered. Unfortunately, this is just the beginning…

The biggest problem is the roof of the auxiliary rooms itself – half-rotten and cracked in places, it must be replaced entirely, not a single part of it is worth saving. The
only cat room in good shape is the last and the biggest one in the backyard, as it was built out of normal building materials just before I moved in a few years ago, so it’s still quite new. Raising enough money to replace the roof sounds like science fiction at the moment,
but if we miraculously succeed, there will be plenty of hard work ahead. Additional layers of bricks will be added onto the existing walls and after that, the wooden frame will be placed on top of the bricks to allow the concrete to be poured into it. Once the concrete
frame is finished, it will be ready to carry the new roofing. Roof beams and rafters will be set in place to make a new roof structure, which will then be covered with an insulation layer and the final step will be putting up new roof tiles. With this new roofing, all of the
auxiliary rooms will be ready for next winter.

However, if the lack of funds prevents us from accomplishing what we have planned, Felix kitties will be facing an extremely uncertain future. We can try and put a nylon cover under the old roof
that is already leaking in multiple places, hoping that the water won’t continue soaking the ceilings of the auxiliary rooms, but this patched up roof can’t reasonably be expected to endure another snow. The longer we wait, the greater the risk we run that this rotten
roofing will collapse in on the cats and everything will fall apart. It’s been said a long time ago that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure…

Please, help us if you possibly can! Felix kitties look pampered and happy, without a
care in the world, but their lives will change dramatically if the roof above the rooms they eat and sleep in caves in. Some of them are very old or chronically ill, while others are very young, they have all been through a lot before they arrived here, and now the
question is just how many hardships these delicate, brave little creatures can endure in their lifetime. After all of the misery, fear, violence and hopelessness they were forced to experience, they have found their safe haven that gave their lives a completely new
dimension. It would be so unfair to let anything shatter their hope again…

Together, we can make their fairy tale last! Every little bit helps!

1 comment:

Timmy Tomcat said...

We really love your new website! Purrs to all.
Me and Dad are going to try and put together some ideas to get you some donors from here in the US.
We have you in our prayers every day!
Timmy and Dad