Editorial Note: This is part of a series highlighting recipients of Lady Freethinker’s Urgent Need Fund 2023 grant program, created to help nonprofit organizations working on projects to rescue or care for animals, or raise awareness to improve the way animals are treated. Learn more about the program and how to apply here.

ERHAM means “take pity” in Arabic.

That is what Ann Heslop – founder of ERHAM – has done for hundreds of cats dumped by the rubbish pile in her small Moroccan town of Azemmour.

Founded in 2018, ERHAM has sterilized hundreds of street cats, provided free spaying of female cats for residents who could not afford it, and provided community education about how sterilization improves quality of life for animals.

ERHAM has also built an open-air shelter, provided food and medicine for the animals, and opened a house for disabled cats – many of whom are eventually transported to loving forever homes.

Kittens from rubbish pile

Kittens From Rubbish Pile (Courtesy of ERHAM)

Recently, they’ve also been helping animals affected by Morocco’s recent earthquake.

The earthquake especially impacted the street cats and dogs relying on the area’s restaurants for scraps.

Heslop loaded a truck with “mountains” of cat and dog food, then drove to the impacted area to feed the displaced animals.

“We quickly set up feeding stations throughout the area and found animal-loving people to feed the cats on a daily basis with high quality pet food, which we replenish every 10 to 14 days,” Heslop told Lady Freethinker.

ERHAM applied for a Lady Freethinker grant to help provide free sterilizations to ensure fewer homeless kittens are dumped in the area.

Through your support, Lady Freethinker awarded ERHAM a $10,000 grant so they could begin offering free sterilization again.

They have also been able to treat many dogs suffering from mange, malnutrition, and dehydration, as well as pay for some medical emergencies.

Morocco Dog Before and After

Jameel Before and After (Courtesy of ERHAM)

“Without the grant, we would simply not have been able to continue,” Heslop added.  

Follow ERHAM on Facebook to learn more about how your support is making a difference for cats and dogs in Morocco.

We are proud to support ERHAM and the critical role they play in helping improve quality of life for Morocco’s cats and dogs, and we extend our heartfelt appreciation to our supporters for making this Urgent Need Fund grant a reality.