by ELOISE WALTON
An animal shelter in Quarteira is under threat unless more funds are raised to keep it running.
Quintinha dos Animais, also known as the Goldra animal shelter, provides shelter for more than 170 abandoned cats and 190 dogs and puppies.
Maria de Lourdes Ingle set up the shelter in 1999 to help save and treat abandoned and sick animals throughout the Algarve.
Since then she has spent much of her own time and her life savings caring for and re-homing the many animals that are found at her door.
“I always wanted to have animals when I was little but could not when I lived in London. I decided that one day, when I could afford it, I would dedicate my time to helping animals,” she told the Algarve Resident.
Maria de Lourdes is, however, unable to carry on with the work she does without the help of additional funding.
“I can’t say no to taking in more animals because if I say no, people just abandon them at the gate or bring them anyway,” she said.
The shelter, which can no longer keep running with just Maria de Lourdes’ financing, costs around 40,000 euros a year to run.
“I sold a house I owned in Vilamoura a few years ago to keep the charity going and do some work in the grounds, but the financial situation is getting difficult,” she said.
“I spend around 6,000 euros a month on running the shelter, which includes two full-time and one part-time staff.”
She says that the shelter has become overwhelmed with food and vet bills along with staff and maintenance costs.
“I have no idea how much I have spent in the past 10 years, but, for example, last month I spent 1,444 euros on veterinary bills and again the other day another 974 euros,” said Maria de Lourdes.
The owners of Monty’s in Vale de Lobo, Sid and Veronica Richardson, have already started a fundraising campaign by committing themselves to an annual donation of 10,000 euros.
Lourdes hopes others might be able to make an annual donation to ensure the shelter has regular funding.
“Any help is greatly appreciated, even if it is pet food or flea collars,” said Maria de Lourdes.
If you would like to help the animal shelter or donate funds, please contact Lourdes on 916 136 011. To give a donation by bank transfer, the details are: Millennium BCP, account number 00266034529, NIB: 003300000026603452905, IBAN: PT50 003300000026603452905, SWIFT: BCOMPTPL. Alternatively, visits can also be arranged to the shelter for those who would like to adopt. The shelter is on Avenida Sá Carneiro, Lote 1 Bloco B, Quarteira.