Written by Charlene Barnfield – Volunteer at The 9th Day
The 9th Day Rescue, Rehabilitation & Rehoming Centre in Krugersdorp was founded by Charmaine Booysens in January 2015. It was a dream come true for her. Her big heart for the plight of animals has plagued her since a young age.
A heart big enough for all animals
Shortly after Charmaine married, her neighbour’s dog got left out in the cold and was whining. She took pity on him, got her husband to climb the wall and brought him to her house to get warm until his owners arrived; one could call that her very first rescue. Her compassion is not limited to dogs and cats; she believes every creature has a right to life. Charmaine will not allow rats to be poisoned but rather caught and set free in the veld. That’s why The 9th Day is, of course, a pro-life shelter.
Charmaine started her “animal career” by donating goods to the local SPCA. She later joined their committee and shortly afterwards was appointed Chairlady. Whilst valuable experience was gained there, she had many ideas and dreams of her own and, so, our beloved shelter was established.
What happened on the 9th day
The name “The 9th Day” was chosen as, according to a popular story, on the 9th Day God made a dog (please click on the link and watch the YouTube video). Though we love all animals, everyone knows that dogs and cats are just THE best! Charmaine has always had a very soft spot for the mixed breeds, the “scruffy” dogs with all their shapes and sizes, although they all deserve unconditional, eternal love no matter the breed, age, sex or condition they are in.
The 9th Day’s main focus is on stray animals – the neglected, sick, broken souls that live in fields, walk the streets, and scurry through nearby impoverished communities, going through rubbish bins for food. We love the pavement specials; we live for the “mongrels”; we fight for the ones that have no hope – the ones that people feel do not deserve a second chance. We also provide outsourced medical care, shelter (in kennels and foster homes), and rehabilitation to the best of our abilities.
Why? Because underneath the ugly, the old, the mange, the “too far gone” is a heart of pure gold. A blind eye is never turned to an animal in need. We give them a home, albeit the shelter, the vet care they need, teach them to trust, mend their broken souls, and find them forever homes. Their wagging tails make this highly emotional task all worthwhile.
Although we’re not “area bound”, we have had an influx of animals due to the closure of the Krugersdorp SPCA. We’re the only pro-life rescue organisation in the Krugersdorp/Roodepoort area that mainly focuses on stray animals. Currently, we have about 150 animals in our care and are proud to have successfully homed about 320 animals in the past year. We currently rent boarding kennels in Oatlands, Krugersdorp West, for all our rescue animals. Our next challenge is to buy our own land and build kennels. This will ensure a more secure future for the shelter – and the animals we care for.
We endeavour to find a wonderful home for each of our “orphans”; all are microchipped so they can always find their way home if need be. They are also all vaccinated, dewormed and sterilised.
Finally, we are most fortunate that the wonderful vets and office staff at Roodekruin Vet have taken us under their wing. We cannot express how grateful we are for their care and assistance.
We are a small, growing team working on a volunteer basis relying entirely on the generosity and actions of the public/sponsors, and depending on this continued loyalty. The 9th Day is the team, the supporters (near and far), the volunteers, the rescuers, and anyone who wishes to help the rescued. The more support we have, the more we can achieve – including our ultimate goal of finding that forever family for every rescued animal in our care.