It was on February 5th, 2012, when we first registered our group, the Sooke Animal Food & Rescue Society, Safars.org, as a no-for-profit corporation in the Greater Victoria area, in Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.

We were just five concerned friends wanting to help abandoned cats and street owned dogs. Although we knew nothing about the excessive and rigid burocratic adventure we were embarking on, we shared a strong sense of responsibility and good will. We were confident in our good hearts to achieve our goal.

On the first year, our passion lead us through the right path, we were offered to use a 100 year old barn where to house and rehabilitate our feral cats and where to run our first pet food bank in the region called, the Boneless Project. The barn was in ruins, but to us it was the castle we worked very hard to restore. It was our kitties' safehaven.

Thanks to it we could spread the message that feral cats are not an alien species as some groups were trying to make people believe. We were the first group on the island who publically took and still takes a political stand in defence of feral cats.

The little video we are showing you is from one of those beautufil mamma cats who called the barn home.

The barn gave us the space we needed to keep large quantities of pet food facilitating us the launching of our Boneless Project.

At the end of 2015, due to the fact that most of our operations and donations were handed downtown, we changed our name for the Victoria Pet Food Bank & Feral Cat Rehabilitation Society.

These were busy times for us, every day we found new animals to help. Our constant back and forth driving saving cats, delivering pet food to shelters and to door-to-door low-income disabled seniors tripled our gasoline expenses.

From 2012 to 2020 our small group sponsored the largest no-profit housing corporations in our capital: Our Place Society, Victoria Cool Aid Society, Portland House, and Salvation Army's Stan Haggen Center for Families.

Unfortunately, the arrival of Covid changed everything. The shelters closed to the public and the general feeling of the population became discriminatory toward those living on the streets. The food we used to receive for our project was now given to dog rescue groups.

The change was like a shock; especially, for the pooches who were always so happy to see us arrive with the things their owners could not afford to give them such as: good quality food, treats, toys, warm rain coats,leashes, harness, collars, flea treatment and; in many occassions, spaying and neutering.

We had three loyal pet stores whose owners kept supporting our pet food bank for street owned pets and they deserve to be mentioned. These wonderful and caring individuals are the owners of: Creatures Pet Store, Paws on Cook and Mr. Pet's. Thanks to their generosity and to donations we received from the public we were able to packed our boxes with goodies and spent a entire year going to tent cities and to the new motels. These motels were paid by the Ministry of Housing as a place where the street community members could safely stay during Covid.

When the motels program died and the street men and women became more lost and dispersed around parks and streets than ever before, it was no way we could continue helping their pets.

It was sad to see the end of an era, of a program we have devoted so much effort to build and that brought so much joy and help to so many animals. We knew that nobody will continue it because the program never gave us a penny in our pockets. It is just an immense amount of volunteer work, of gasoline driving around and of having to constantly beg the public for food. All is done just for the love of pets.

The end of the Boneless Project in Victoria City gave us more time to dedicate to our main mission, saving and rehabilitating feral cats. From 2018 to 2022 we have been simultanously working in large feral cat colonies. Some of these rescues are presently been transformed in videos in our "videos page".

Due to the unfair bylaws in the Greater Victoria's municipalities regarding the amount of cats animal rescue groups can house, in 2020, we finally decided to become a private group. Our duty as an animal rescue is to speak up for animal rights and to lobby the government to bring change.

In 2020, two other events brought change to our group. First, we began our third program, "the S.O.S Project", to feed, shelter and care for chained dogs as much as their owners allow us.

For the last twelve years we have been collecting and delivering dog houses to our feral cat feeding stations and we usually walk through isolated areas in search of signs of cats needing help. During our investigation periods and while we were also delivering pet food to low income families we came across some dogs that could really benefit from our intervention.Below is a video of some of these pooches.

The second change in our routine and activities was our move to Lake Cowichan, a gorgeous and peaceful rural region adjacent to Port Renfrew, our usual working area.

Our president's children who are also huge animal lovers and great feral cat rehabilitators bought a farm on a piece of land. The old centennial house where during eight years, after that we lost our barn, we used as our shelter was getting crushed by new developments and population growth. It was a dear house to us where we welcomed and rehabilitated so many feral kittens. It was sad to leave our feeding stations and community of cat lovers behind. Luckly, one of our great volunteers continues collecting and delivering the food to our cat colonies.

It was a big expensive move and a year of building sheds, catios and new structures with little money. We are really happy here, but there is a lot to do to transform it in the dream feral cat shelter one day it will become. There is a lot of work to do up here; especially, in regards to dogs and feral cats.

We are constantly working and already planning the beginning for our three programs up here. We already have a Council meeting booked and a new campaign on the way.

Last, if you love animals as we do, please, help us achieve our goal like that we can ressucitate our very successful programs and keep helping hungry and neglected cats and dogs. We left behind an already set up system of foster homes, volunteers and donations such as recycling and pet food. Starting all over it is not easy; especially, when we already work in an isolated area such as Port Renfrew where there are so many cats and dogs needing spay/neuter, medical attention and food.

On these pages you we find all the necessary evidence proving our commitment, resilience and hard work, but we cannot do it alone. We need your support. Below we are adding our PayPal button in case you wish to send us a monthly donation of $10. We are also adding our E-mail link for those who prefer to use e-transfer.

In our Wish-List and Contact Us pages you will find more ways you can support our beloved causes.

Telephone: 778-352-2999

If you prefer to donate to us via e-transfer this is our : E-MAIL

thank you


© 2012 SAFARS