Mayhew & Crisis team up to warm hearts, hands & hounds this Christmas

Mayhew, leading animal welfare charity for dogs, cats and communities, and Crisis, the national homelessness charity, have teamed up for the twelfth year running to help people and animals affected by homelessness this Christmas.

  • Mayhew will support Crisis by providing kennels at one of their Christmas centres. Owners experiencing homelessness will receive shelter, food, warm clothes, support and advice to get back on their feet, and dogs will benefit from a full canine health check, jackets, collars and food.
  • Members of the public can also help support Mayhew and Crisis by purchasing one of five specially designed virtual gift cards, which will fund much needed items and services for people and pets.
  • Additionally, Mayhew’s Animal Welfare Officers will be training Crisis volunteers throughout November and December in order to ensure that dogs receive the best care alongside their owners during the winter period.

A dog is often the only companion for someone who doesn’t have a place to call home, and this is why the critical work both Mayhew and Crisis do to help people and animals needs extra support from the public at this time of year.

Mayhew CEO, Caroline Yates, said “Homelessness is devastating, and we know that the expense of pet food and vet care puts an extra burden on people already in a vulnerable position.

“We believe that helping people and helping animals comes hand in hand, and we are therefore thrilled to have joined forces with Crisis yet again. Together, we can help keep homeless people and their beloved pets warm and well looked after this Christmas.”

Helping volunteers to help others

Volunteering for Crisis is an annual tradition for many people across London, with more and more people offering to help every single year.

Mayhew’s Animal Welfare team work with Crisis team leaders and volunteers who are scheduled to help out at Crisis Christmas centres, ensuring everyone feels comfortable and clued up on how best to interact with the dogs and dog owners.

  • Crisis volunteers first visit Mayhew for a full day in mid-November, to learn about Mayhew’s unique approach to animal welfare – including our Pet Refuge programme and the community based programmes that help vulnerable people and their pets throughout the year.
  • This is an incredibly important training session, as volunteers are given an insight into the many kinds of situations that can lead to an animal and their owner becoming homeless.

Following this, Mayhew’s Animal Welfare Officers then join Crisis’s official volunteer briefing in December, and give a dog safety and welfare presentation to anyone who will be working with people and their dogs over the festive period.

AJ Ford, Deputy Head of Animal Welfare at Mayhew, said “Mayhew’s Animal Welfare team work with vulnerable people and their dogs all year around, and we are honoured to help and support Crisis Christmas Centres again this year.

“We look forward to meeting this years’ volunteers at our upcoming training sessions, which will help everyone understand the root causes of why people and their animals may become homeless in the first place, and how each of our charities can make a real difference.

“During our time supporting Crisis, we can also help to detect any health issues that attending dogs may have, so that we can refer them to Mayhew’s own Vet Clinic. We also offer free neutering and flea and worming treatments. As with all of our work, we strive to keep owners and animals together for as long as possible, at Christmas and beyond.”

Helping two charities with just one gift

In addition to supporting Crisis Christmas centres, Mayhew and Crisis have today released a brand new range of virtual gift cards, designed to make a real difference to people and dogs who are homeless.

By purchasing a virtual gift card, members of the public will be able to help two frontline charities tackle homelessness during one of the hardest seasons.

Homelessness is devastating at any time of year, and during Christmas, it can feel especially isolating not to have a place to call home.

Priced at £5, £10, £15, £20 and £50, the gift cards fund necessary items such as food and warm coats for dogs and their owners who are homeless, and can also help to cover the cost of much needed services like practical skills training and interview workshops for dog owners, and health checks and veterinary treatment for their closest canine companions.

By giving one of these special cards to a friend or loved one, buyers can be sure that someone in need and their four legged friend will be taken care of at Christmas.

The gift cards are available to buy from the Crisis website from Thursday 14 December.

Helping to leave homelessness behind

Mayhew works year-round to keep animals and their owners together, by providing non-judgemental care and support, pet supplies and free and low cost veterinary treatment.

Crisis works to help people out of homelessness for good through year round support with housing, employment and health.

Funds raised for both charities – at Christmas and during the rest of the year – can provide life changing support annually for homeless people and their pets.

Through their joint initiative, Mayhew and Crisis hope to help even more vulnerable owners and animals this Christmas and beyond, and make a real difference to the ongoing lives of homeless people and their dogs.

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