Fundación HOPE is an independently run animal shelter founded by animal rights lawyer Hania and is supported by a small group of animal and environmental activists in Arequipa, Peru. They care for over 100 dogs and cats at any given time, and they’ve spayed and neutered more than 9,000 animals.
Instead of waiting for people to bring them animals off the street, Fundación HOPE takes a heartwarming—and heartbreaking—approach: They head to the hills around Arequipa, where they estimate there are around 500 starving and abandoned dogs at any given time.
There, they comb the property of a landfill, rescuing dogs that have gone through unthinkable situations. What do they encounter? Dogs and cats that people have thrown away alive.
One of the biggest offenders of this atrocity is vendors from an animal market in Arequipa, as they dispose of the animals that they’re unable to sell. Since the vendors don’t spay or neuter them, the dogs and cats that survive the trip to the landfill end up reproducing. Fundación HOPE frequents this market, rescuing as many animals as possible before they end up injured, dying, or dead at the landfill.
Harnessing patience and persistence, it can take months for Fundación HOPE members to build trust with some of the older animals so that they can bring them to the safety of their shelter. There, in conjunction with the many younger animals they encounter, they receive dewormer, vaccinations, and spaying or neutering.
Spaying and neutering—coupled with educating the public—are among Fundación HOPE’s core values. They offer frequent spay and neuter programs, providing the service for free for low-income pet owners.
Furthermore, any puppy or kitten that someone adopts from Fundación HOPE can return to the shelter once the animal reaches the age to undergo surgery, receiving this service for free.
While rescuing abused and abandoned animals and promoting pet care education in their community is at the forefront of Fundación HOPE’s mission, environmental activism is, too. They encourage people to take action to protect the environment because doing so is the only way to create a sustainable future for stray animals and wildlife.
If you’re wondering whether there’s a correlation between the name “HOPE” and the English translation, there is. The foundation purposefully picked the word because of its English meaning to have faith that animal neglect and abuse can and will improve if enough people put effort into changing it.
As Fundación HOPE so rightfully says, it’s on each of us to take action and be the voice instead of turning a blind eye to animal abuse and neglect.
Address: Calle Ibañez 102 Arequipa, Peru
Hours of operation: Flexible according to the volunteer or donator’s availability
WhatsApp number: +51 989-769-292
Email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
English Spoken? Yes, but let them know in advance if you’ll need help translating so that they can ensure an English-speaking person is present the day of your visit.
Below are the areas where Fundación HOPE needs the most help:
Fundación HOPE welcomes volunteers with open arms. While they get the occasional volunteer or group of students that pass through to help out, the foundation’s founding members are primarily the ones who keep things afloat—both in terms of labor and financially.
Since the animals at Fundación HOPE have their basic needs met, one of the foundation’s biggest desires is for volunteers to accompany them to the animal market and landfill so that you witness the gut-wrenching reality of what happens there. They then hope you’ll spread the word, sharing the stories with your family, friends, and community, helping to raise awareness with the goal of ending this horrible practice.
There’s a lot of flexibility for you to work with Fundación HOPE. So, you can arrange a visit that works well with both of your schedules. Sending a message via WhatsApp is the best way to communicate with them.
Fundación HOPE is always in need of the following donations:
You can also donate a gift of money to Fundación HOPE. This PayPal link will take you to the page where you can make a direct donation.
When arranging a donation or volunteer visit to Fundación HOPE, keep in mind that there are two streets with the word “Ibañez” in Arequipa. You want to go to the one named Ibañez, not Jacinto Ibañez. A 3-story green building on the corner of Calle Ibañez is what you’re looking for.
Finding loving homes for their dogs and cats is something that the team members at Fundación HOPE celebrate. That’s especially the case for older animals, given that adoptees-to-be tend to gravitate towards puppies and kittens.
Whether you live in Arequipa, elsewhere in Peru, or abroad, you’re encouraged to give or help find a home for the animals you bond with. Given the huge number of abandoned and abused animals needing support, you’ll not only help the animal you take home with you but open the opportunity for an animal in need to take your pet’s place.
Fundación HOPE’s requirements for adopting a pet include having knowledge of basic pet care, an income that can cover your pet’s expenses, and the willingness to keep your pet up-to-date on their basic health care needs.
If you adopt a pet from Fundación HOPE that’s too young to be spayed or neutered, they offer this service free of charge once your pet is old enough for surgery.
Are you a plane ride away from home? Flying with an adopted animal isn’t a walk in the park like the day you two bonded, but it isn’t impossible either. We can help give you a head start with our guide on How to Fly Your Pet out of Peru.
Since Fundación HOPE actively seeks out abused and abandoned animals in Arequipa, they often don’t have the capacity to take in stray animals that people encounter. Furthermore, the animals you encounter in downtown Arequipa are often relatively better off than those they work with in the hills, away from the city. And so, given limited space and funding, Fundación HOPE aims to help animals that are in the very worst conditions.
The authorities in Arequipa are also largely unhelpful when it comes to animal rights. And Hania knows this well, given that she’s a lawyer who works on animal rights cases.
Given these realities, Fundación HOPE encourages you to take action on your own. At a minimum, offer food and water to the animal you find. But you can take an even bigger step by bringing the animal to a veterinary clinic (there are many in Arequipa) and footing the bill for the animal to receive vaccines, any medical treatment they need, and to get spayed or neutered.
Even if the vet ultimately has to turn the animal back to the street, the animal will at least be in a healthier state. Furthermore, you’ll play a direct role in reducing reproduction, preventing the unnecessary suffering of stray puppies and kittens.
Stay up-to-date on current events at Fundación HOPE by following their website and social media pages.
Leaving Pawprints connects travelers with animal shelters across the globe for free. We lay the foundation by communicating with the shelters to find out what support they need. If you want to volunteer abroad with animals in Peru, check out the animal shelters we’ve partnered with to find out how you can help.
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