HONOLULU (KHON2) – Like many local businesses, the Lanai Cat Sanctuary has been hit hard due to the Coronavirus pandemic. Now, they need the community’s help to keep their doors open.
The facility is a cat lovers heaven. The three and a half acre sanctuary is home to nearly 700 furry friends.
“It’s really grown in the last several years, in the last six years we’ve grown from 800 visitors to 15,000 visitors come every year,” said Keoni Vaugh, Executive Director of the Lanai Cat Sanctuary.
With the world put on pause due to the Coronavirus outbreak, it’s impacted the Lanai Cat Sanctuary more than they imagined.
“We knew we were a major tourist attraction and so we shut our doors in the middle of March to the public and we’ve been really impacted by that financially but in the big picture we want to do our part to keep the community safe.”
Vaughn says the non-profit relies heavily on visitor donations. The quarantine has forced the facility to think outside of the box to remain open.
“We’ve been a little innovative in trying to maintain that interaction with our fans. We’ve done like cat yoga and online campaigns to try to make up that loss of revenue.”
Although the virtual events are keeping these felines busy, sanctuary residents miss their guests dearly.
“The cats show up to the welcome, the main gate and nobody is there and so we know they’re missing the guests and so when we do reopen everything will go back to normal.”
Vaughn is hoping the community can show their support and donate to avoid the Lanai Cat Sanctuary closing indefinitely.
“It’s uncharted waters for us and we’re taking a really positive approach and asking anyone that’s willing to support us please do so. I know it’s tough times for all but hopefully we can get back to normal in the near future.”
To learn more about how you can donate or virtually sponsor a cat to support the Lanai Cat Sanctuary, click here.