Long-standing Sheffield animal rescue centre in crisis and facing closure

An animal rescue charity that has been a sanctuary for poorly and injured wildlife for nearly 40 years is facing closure due to a funding crisis.

Since 1982 South Yorkshire Animal Rescue has been a haven for thousands of injured animals - including birds, squirrels and hedgehogs - which are routinely nursed back to health and released back into the wild.

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But the Walkley-based organisation is running out of money and volunteers warned it could close unless enough funding can be found to keep it going.

The charity has been in financial difficulty for a couple of years and only survived last year after the public supported a fundraising appeal that was highlighted by The Star.

Volunteers are now urging residents to back a fresh online fundraising appeal which is due to launch in the next few weeks.

Philip Slack, a committee member for the charity, said: “It is difficult to say how long we might have left because we are having to work month to month.

“If we can’t find the funding then it could shut, which would be a huge shame because we have been here for a long time now.”

The charity has had to scale back the number of animals they take in.

They still help to nurture wildlife such as hedgehogs and birds back to health but no longer take in cats and dogs which may require longer attention.

Mr Slack said it costs about £1000 a month for the building and they are simply struggling to make ends meet.

The 59-year-old added: “Fundraisers such as raffles just don’t bring in as much money as they used to.

“And because other shops have closed down around us you don’t get as much footfall with people popping in to buy things from our shop.

“We have applied for funding from a number of places but they only seem keen on releasing money if you have a specific project, rather than helping with running costs.

“We don’t have enough people to launch any new projects, we are just trying to keep going.”

He praised members of the public for supporting previous fundraising appeals, and said a new one would be launching on the charity’s Facebook page soon.

The charity would also like to hear from any new volunteers who can help. Please ring the store on 0114 234 9656.