Last week my nine month old kitten Rupert went missing and my two young children and I were besides ourselves with worry. There had been a terrible frost and he just disappeared without a trace for the very first time as we went to bed with the most sickening feeling in our stomachs that something awful had happened to him; somebody we loved so much was out there in the freezing darkness, scared and alone when he should be safe and warm at home with his family.
The children rushed to the back door in the morning to see if he’d returned and to see the agony and sorrow in their eyes when he wasn’t there was utterly heartbreaking. “But he’s so little Mummy and it’s so cold. What if he’s injured and needs help? What if somebody hurts him? Will he get sick if he doesn’t stay warm? Where could he be hiding from the frost? What if he dies?” All questions that I had no answers to when all we could do was pray. We printed missing posters and contacted the vets in the hope that somebody would have seen him or help us to find him, anything, everything we could think of. Fortunately for us little Rupert returned 30hrs after going missing and we smothered him with love and kisses and cuddles and treats in his warm and cosy bed with a nice meal to celebrate his safe return. We have no idea what happened to him, where he had been or what had caused him to spend a night away from home when he’d never been gone for more than a few hours at a time as he hates the bad weather. Had he been accidentally shut in a garage? Kidnapped by an enthusiastic child who begged their parents to keep him as a pet or wandered too far from home and lost his way? We will never know.
One thing that’s for sure, as a mother it broke my heart with worry knowing somebody I love so dearly was out on the streets cold and alone when they should have been tucked up safely at home. This feeling of love and humanity doesn’t end with my own pets and family, it extends to friends, colleagues, neighbours and strangers worldwide. Nobody should suffer, nobody should go unaccounted for, forgotten or unloved. Homelessness is a cruel and unforgiving position to be in and it doesn’t just affect those who you see sleeping under bridges and in shop doorways as the world walks past going about their day, rushing to and fro and merrily Christmas shopping. Nobody wants to be homeless, nobody wants to lose their job, for their parents to move away and leave them behind, for marriages to fail or to spiral into debt to the point of losing everything but sadly it happens, and it happens everyday to so many people.
And it’s not just those who have lost everything that are forgotten, as families grow up, children have children of their own, relocate and move on with their lives and the elderly are left behind, silent, cold and alone. Christmas is a time for celebrations, for family to come together and be thankful, to realise our blessings and overcoming suffering and sacrifice and so I’d like to think that Christmas is a time to also extend our love, support and help towards others who are less fortunate. A group of friends and I are doing a 30hr sponsored sleep on the streets this Christmas as a way to raise funds and awareness for the homeless and elderly and we’ll be donating every penny raised to local charities including Connection Support, Aylesbury Homeless Action Group and Age UK as well as purchasing sleeping bags, warm clothes, toiletries and Christmas presents for those in need.
Your support and assistance is greatly appreciated in helping us to reach the £1,000 target we have set via a Just Giving page here. I appreciate that Christmas is an expensive time of year for us all but as little or as much as you can spare can make such a great difference to those in need; rather than giving gifts and cards at Christmas please spend the equivalent monetary value as a donation to help such a worthy cause. For every £10.00 donation received I will provide a very special thank you reward to each donor after our fundraising target has been achieved and for businesses who donate £50.00 or more I am happy to include their contact details here and recognise their kindness on my social media. Together we can make the world a better place, let’s not leave anybody cold and unloved this Christmas.
Please help us to help others by donating via our fundraising page here! Share this post and spread the word to help us to reach our target!