Refugio Amigo Fiel
The Big Mission: Rescue and Protect Stray Dogs and Cats in Cartegena, Colombia
When Cecilia and her husband retired and moved to Colombia from France in 2008, she wanted to dedicate her time and energy toward humanitarian efforts centered around homeless dogs and cats. After eventually settling in Cartagena, Cecilia dedicated herself full-time to rescuing and protecting the city’s stray animals.To further her efforts she founded Refugio Amigo Fiel in 2011. Spanish for “My Faithful Friend Shelter”, Refugio Amigo Fiel currently cares for 400 dogs and 200 cats. Cecilia has saved thousands of animals over the years she’s been running her shelter.
Situated on 7,000 square meters (1.7 acres) Cecilia built the shelters from the ground up to provide the animals with a safe space. This is her labor of love. Over the years she has expanded her staff to include two paid employees including Omar, the manager, who lives on the premises to take care of the animals 24/7 Additional support, including from Dr. Wilmer Vega, is done on a volunteer basis.
What we do
Refugio Amigo Fiel houses and cares for rescued animals from the streets of Cartagena, Colombia. Cecilia is currently looking for the right partners to help her find good homes for the animals she rescues where they will be provided with the same love and respect she offers them. While she’s pursuing these long-term goals, Cecilia and Refugio have dedicated themselves to providing dignified lives for all the animals that come to the shelter.
A pressing current goal of Cecilia’s, with the invaluable help of Dr. Vega, is to spay and neuter all the animals who come to the shelter, as well as educate the community on the value of stray sterilization. The staggering statistics suggest that 1 unspayed dog can create roughly 12,000 offspring over the course of their reproductive years.
Another goal of Cecilia’s is to be able to provide monthly spay and neuter campaigns to help reduce the stray population. Working with Dr. Vega, they are able to host spay neuter clinics in local areas. They are able to perform up to 40 procedures a day, at roughly $25 per spay or neuter. Currently, all funds to keep Refugio Mi Amigo Fiel running come directly from Cecilia or the occasional donations she receives from friends and family. At about $3000 a month for food alone, plus salaries and spay and neuter costs, it can become prohibitive. They are in dire need of funding and donations to underwrite their expenses.
How you can help
Donations always help, no matter the amount. Funds are currently needed for food, medicine, and medical care.
If you can’t donate, please share Cecilia’s story to create greater awareness of Refugio Mi Amigo Fiel and all the great work they are doing for the stray population of Cartagena. Much like roots build a strong foundation for trees, sharing her story can help build a sustainable network for Cecilia to keep helping and saving these animals.
Additionally, if you know of any American or Canadian based rescues that would be interested in forming a partnership with Mi Amigo Fiel to transport dogs and cats out of Cartagena for adoption, please contact me at hello@dogsimeet and I will help put you in touch with Cecilia.