Turkish Cry for Help

This is Manuela’s story.

For almost a decade, one woman has made it her life’s mission to care for the strays of Avsallar, a small coastal Turkish town stretching south along the Mediterranean towards Syria. Walking upwards of 8 hours a day, Manuela Wroblewski, a German national, has the proverbial heart of gold. Every day she cares for more than 200 unwanted cats and several dozen dogs, providing them with food, water, and urgent medical care−­­through freezing winters to sweltering summers. Her days often end in tears, but she manages to post photos with daily updates, introducing these animals to the world. She even has names for many of the animals under her care. As heartwarming as her efforts are, it’s even more impressive that she’s doing this in the face of active opposition from locals and tourists. She’s been spat on, hit with rocks, and slapped in the face just for trying to help the animals.
The abuse inflicted upon the cats and dogs of Avsallar is unconscionable−they’re targeted with the intent to poison, shoot, torture, or kill them. Most recently this poor kitten was punted like a soccer ball simply for existing; succumbing to her internal injuries, she sadly didn’t make it through the night.
Although the situation is very difficult, there’s hope. Manuela has laid the groundwork for us to make profound and lasting changes. One woman, through nearly a decade’s worth of solitary sacrifice, has made it possible for compassionate people the world over to change the fate of these at-risk animals.

With the generosity of a local veterinarian and his staff, a handful of volunteers, the Harmony Fund nonprofit rescue organization, and a growing network of Facebook followers, we’ve been able to spay or neuter hundreds of cats and dogs. From Finland to California to Japan, this same network has provided loving homes to more than 300 cats and dogs.

Their loving families often post dramatic before-and-after pics of their fur-babies who, having left their dangerous former lives, now lounge in their favorite spots: laps, couches, windowsills, and computer keyboards. Hundreds of homeless street cats and dogs are now just loved companions adored by their families for their unique personalities and amusing quirks. But their journey comes at a cost.

Pet food is practically unaffordable in Turkey. It’s cheaper for Manuela to fly back to Germany, stock up on food and fly back to Turkey rather than buying food locally. It costs $80 a day to feed the hundreds of strays, $55 for each spay or neuter surgery, and even more if someone wants to adopt or foster abroad. Sadly, due to the current political state of Turkey as well as a lack of local interest and hostility towards, an Avsallar shelter is simply out of the question.

In an unfortunate twist of fate, it is now Manuela who needs care. The years of chronic stress and begging for funds have taken a toll on her health. Besides having more volunteers on the ground, one of the simplest ways to ease her burden is having enough funds to accomplish her immediate goals: spay and neuter as many cats and dogs as possible and find homes for Avsallar’s friendliest strays whose trusting nature puts them at the greatest risk.

For the animal advocates reading this, we have the tremendous opportunity to support Manuela’s labor of love with compassion. The activist in all of us would love to be able to work as nobly and humbly as she has. But rare is the person who can afford to quit their job, move to Turkey and commit their daily lives to shepherding them. What she has done thus far is nothing short of extraordinary. Please help Manuela find a lasting solution for the strays of Avsallar by donating what you can afford. Each contribution, regardless of size, will make a tremendous impact in the following ways:
1.     Urgent medical care: varies
2.     Spay and neuter: $55 per
3.     Food: $80 per day
4.     Adoption/foster - vaccines, FIV/FeLV, etc: $175

(Local vet in action providing emergency care to a kitten hit by a car while a volunteer looks on)

Housed at a safe location as shelters are non-existent, 32 cats are urgently awaiting adoption/ foster. Current on shots, healthy, and well-socialized, these lap-tastic cats are ready for their new families.

Rescue groups or individuals interested in adopting or fostering one of Avsallar’s strays, volunteering on the streets of Avsallar, or following pictures of Manuela’s daily feeding walks and urgent cases, please contact us at https://adoptionavsallar.com/ for more information. If you or someone you know is flying from Turkey to US, Canada, or Europe, please get in touch with us as we would love to have your help. 

If you would prefer your donation be used for a specific cause (e.g. food, medical), please indicate your preference in the comment section of the fundraiser.

If you’ve taken the time out of your busy day to read this far and learn more about this plight, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We can’t do this alone and we thank you for whatever you are able to contribute. BECOME A VIRTUAL ADVOCATE TODAY! Donate now to make a difference in the lives of cats and dogs who cannot save themselves.

                                              THANK YOU!

I am a friend and am part of a volunteer network for Manuela's cause. I will facilitate the disbursement of funds from this campaign via PayPal, divided between Manuela (food), TNR (spay/neuter costs) and veterinary services/emergencies (or according to donor wishes).


  • Patti Wolfe 
    • $25 
    • 28 mos
  • Casey Krause  
    • $25 
    • 28 mos
  • Angela Porsch 
    • $10 
    • 29 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $10 
    • 29 mos
  • Jennifer Wellins 
    • $25 
    • 29 mos
See all

Fundraising team (2)

Lara Marie Rauschert-Mcfarland 
Vass, NC
Tiger Amerman 
Team member
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