The innovative Safe at Home program saves the lives of kittens, who are the most often killed in shelters. Unweaned, newborn kittens are an estimated 20% to 40% of the cats impounded in municipal shelters. If they require bottle feeding and no one fosters them immediately, these kittens are killed.
Safe at Home empowers community members to serve as foster care givers, playing an integral part in saving animal lives. At the South Los Angeles shelter, Stray Cat Alliance community engagement counselors intercept people, before kittens are impounded, and mentor and support them as fosters, providing training on all aspects from bottle feeding through adoption. We also supply all food and medical care. This is one of the few programs of its kind in the United States. It shouldn’t be. We would like to expand to as many communities as we can.
In 2020, Safe at Home saved 751 or 26% of kittens brought to the South Los Angeles shelter — a 14% increase from 2019 and double what we saved in 2016, the program’s pilot year.