Friends of Bianca is a Scottish charity raising money for the Bianca Associação, an animal shelter in Portugal.
Our recent efforts have allowed us to rebuild much of the shelter, providing kennels to dogs who previously lived outside. We have also secured a new van, allowing the rescue animals to be transported in comfort.
The Bianca Associação is a Portuguese charity that rescues, treats, cares for and then re-homes stray and abandoned dogs and cats.
Many of the animals, which are left in the streets to fend for themselves or found tied or chained to the fence of the Bianca compound, have suffered severely through neglect and abuse and, without Bianca, some would simply starve to death or die of treatable diseases. Established in 2002 in Sesimbra, south of Lisbon, and run solely by volunteers, Bianca now takes 600 animals into its care every year.
While on holiday in Portugal Mike Gibb (a playwright based in Aberdeen Scotland whose many works include Outlander The Musical) was horrified by the many stray and abandoned dogs, most of whom displayed horrific signs of neglect, mistreatment and starvation, and shocked by the fact that there was no one to care for them except charities run by volunteers.
On his return home he decided to set up Friends of Bianca, a group established with the purpose of supporting and raising funds for Bianca throughout the English speaking world. Every penny donated through Friends of Bianca goes directly to the charity in Portugal.
Friends of Bianca became a registered Scottish charity in December 2011.
The shelter currently looks after over 310 dogs and in addition fosters 60 cats and works diligently to find loving, permanent homes with responsible owners for the animals in their care.
The best life for these animals, who through no fault of their own have found their way to the Bianca shelter, is to be adopted into a forever home. Funds raised through Friends of Bianca are being used to not only support Bianca in Portugal but to assist in their current re-homing program and hopefully in early course to assist in bringing dogs to the UK.