CALIFORNIA – Joe Fonseca had been feeding a group of feral cats in the parking lot outside of his office in California for 20 long years. However, one day, Joe decided to retire. You might be asking yourself what about the feral cats? Well, Joe drove to Napa from Vallejo, each and every day to continue feeding the cats. However, when a nearby apartment complex owner confronted him about the cats, he immediately knew he needed to find a permanent solution for his beloved felines.
And so, Joe immediately began calling various shelters, but none of them were able to help.
“I’d gotten some of the cats to begin to trust me. A few would actually come up to me to get fed,” Joe stated to Napa Valley Register. He was absolutely devastated every time he would think about the cats’ potential fate. He then decided to call St. Helena’s We Care Animal Rescue and that’s when everything changed.
We Care is “no kill” rescue shelter and it’s also a sanctuary where feral cats could live in a larger community.
Slowly but surely, one by one, Joe managed to capture each and every one of 20 of the cats to bring them to their new home at We Care. Despite a few scratches here and there, Joe’s mission was a complete success.
Joe’s story doesn’t end there, though. He just so happened to notice that some repairs needed to be made at We Care and because of their light budget, they were unable to do any repairs. Joe lovingly stepped in to repair and replace the broken fixtures. Joe selflessly volunteered his own time to helping out around We Care where ever he was able. He even went on to rebuild an area within the facility for sick cats so that they could still have access to the outer compound and enjoy the fresh air. How amazing is that?
Joe also began building cat furniture for We Care fundraisers. Some of the items included beds which he made out of old drawers, wooden wine cases, and even suitcases. Joe and his wife also began creating some ceramic garden stones with humorous pictures of cats embedded in them. He makes all these items at his workshop at home and then he sells them at the shelter’s fundraisers, with all the proceeds going back to the organization. What a creative way to help animals!
And of course, Joe still spends as much time as he can with his feral cats as they live out their lives safe at We Care. He views the time he volunteered as a way to say thanks to We Care for generously helping him and the feral cats.
“I didn’t used to be a cat person, I was more of a dog person. But now…” Joe stated.
What a truly incredible man!