It all started in 2006 with a trip that took pensioner couple Dawie & Yolanda Hamman (two committee members of PetPals) past an informal settlement called Morkels Cottage in the Strand (Helderberg area) where they came across a very thin and undernourished German Shepherd dog. They stopped and fed him from their car boot where they always kept spare dog/cat food in case of such an emergency. It soon escalated into the regular feeding of ±160 animals, as well as sterilisations and medication for the pets. Other volunteers joined them over time & PetPals was established as a NPO in August 2008. Currently, Dawie & Yolanda feed about 500 animals at least once a week.

In terms of PetPals’ Constitution, the organisation’s main objective is to improve the living conditions of cats and dogs staying in townships and poor communities in the Strand, specifically within the Morkels Cottage and Beverly Hills township areas (and immediate surroundings), by means of feeding, sterilisation, general vet care, emergency care, and provision of shelter. The organisation’s secondary objectives are to rescue and rehome dogs, cats and litters found within the Morkels Cottage and Beverly Hills township areas that are unwanted, unloved or lost, and to distribute goods / hand-outs to those residents within the said communities who strive towards improved pet-care.

The reason for differentiating between our main objective and our secondary objectives is because PetPals specifically focuses on the improvement of the living conditions of animals where they stay / live in the poor communities and less on removing pets from these communities and rehoming these pets. The reason for this is that people in local poor communities will always have animals of their own and due to the prevailing poverty there will always be a need for assistance / relief within such communities. Since 2006, it has always been (and still is) Dawie & Yolanda’s desire to provide this specific service to pets and people in the local poor communities, which is exactly what they are currently doing within PetPals.

PetPals is nothing more that a few volunteers who all have one thing in common and that is to try and save, maintain and improve the living conditions of animals in their immediate surroundings. Nearly all the work entails voluntary work done by Dawie & Yolanda on a daily basis i.t.o. feeding, provision of shelter, and transporting of animals for purposes of sterilisation, general vet care, emergency care, etc. The other members provide voluntary assistance on an ad hoc basis (e.g. on spaydays, dipdays, etc.). It is important to take note that no PetPals-member receives profits / benefits / salaries for the work they do, all proceeds go towards improving the living conditions of pets in townships and poor communities (and towards tools in order to conduct such work).

It is a requirement for every Non Profit Organisation to appoint an independent accountant for annual audits. PetPals will keep daily records of all expenditure (including bank and vet accounts) and full explanation will be given of money spent for perusal by any interested and affected party at any given time. In order to register PetPals as a Non Profit Organisation and to open a bank account, it was also required to draft a constitution and to have a first general meeting, which were subsequently done (copies of PetPals’ Certificate of Registration as an NPO, the Constitution of PetPals, and the Minutes of the first meeting of PetPals can be provided on request).

PetPals solely relies on donations and sponsorships in order to conduct the voluntary work that we do.

PetPals has opened a bank account (see letterhead for account details) as well as a vet account with the name of PetPals at the Strand Animal Hospital (Tel. 021 854 7037). Our greatest needs are funding towards sterilisations / vet care, as well as sponsorship of dog / cat food towards our feeding scheme. If you would be willing to contribute towards the needs of the PetPals Non Profit Organisation, you would make a huge difference in our cause towards improving the living conditions of animals in townships and poor communities. Please feel free to contact us telephonically should you have any further enquiries.

Please see below a photograph of the first official rehoming by PetPals – Jessie (originally from Morkels Cottage) is now living at a wonderful home in the Strand. Recent photographs of Dawie & Yolanda feeding animals in the townships are also shown. Please also see before and after photos of Rinzie who still lives in the Beverly Hills township area – when we first came across her in 2007, she was very thin with no proper shelter, but due to Dawie & Yolanda’s intervention, she is now a healthy and happy girl (which indicates the need for assistance / relief within such poor communities). Thank you very much for your valuable time to read through the introduction letter of PetPals.

Friendly PetPals-regards

Dawie & Yolanda Hamman and Johan & Azanne van Wyk