A Job of a Lifetime: Taking Care of 55 Kitties in Pastoral Greece

Wow. When we first heard about this story, we couldn’t believe it.

Joan Bowell, the well-known artist, has been living in Syros island, Greece, spending most of her time housing and caring for many stray cats who live helplessly on the street.

The island is in quite a plight nowadays; it has a small population of 22,000 people and 13,000 cats. Most of these cats end up with no place to go, and Bowell and her husband just couldn’t do anything about it.

The two were aware of the situation and thus, decided to move to Greece and adopt 55 stray fluffballs, so they could all live together, safe and sound. Furthermore, they’ve founded God’s Little People Cat Sanctuary, which is a non-profit organization, that aims to rescue stray kitties all over the Greek island. 

Over the years, Bowell and her husband have grown a bit tired and needed a well-deserved break, so the artist decided to offer one cat-lover their dream job – taking care of sweet kitties in exotic Greece!

The job entailed caring for 55 cats around the clock. Moreover, Bowell hoped that the chosen applicant would carry a real passion for kitties, and wish to assist in the rescue and placement of more stray cats.  

Syros is acclaimed for its astonishing coastal views and incredibly sunny shores, so there’s no wonder that about 35,000 people had applied for the coveted position.

Bowell knew that she couldn’t pick just anyone; yes, they were all kind cat-lovers, but they also had to have reliable and activist-like characteristics. Only one person really stood out. That woman was Jeffyne Telson.

Telson is one of the best women we ever heard of; she has been working with rescue cats for over 21 years at her own organization called RESQCATS and adopted many fluffballs of her own along with her husband. 

The two share their time living in California and Oregon. Jeffyne spends most of that time around cats; she’s practically obsessed. 

Bowell couldn’t believe Telson’s resume and flew across the sea to meet with her in California. The moment they met, they knew it was fate that brought them together.

Telson revealed that she almost missed this opportunity because she never thought of actually applying for the job. She couldn’t believe that she would be able to leave her husband and her organization for such a long time. 

Nevertheless, her husband was persistent and eagerly encouraged her to apply for the position. He couldn’t see anyone doing it better than his wifey. He knew that this job was his wife’s dream, so the sweetheart wanted to guarantee that she had a chance to make it come true.

When Bowell and Telson met, it was clear that this was a match made in heaven. The two women started planning out the position while doing the interview!

Bowell was deeply touched and astonished when Telson insisted on donating her salary straight back to helping the cats in Greece. Not only did she ask for her income to be donated, but she also conditioned it upon receiving the job! 

When Bowell heard this statement, she knew that she’d picked a real activist, and happily shook Telson’s hand.

Telson is a very special cat-lover. This job was her dream, only thanks to the chance to help and care for plenty of cats in need. She doesn’t care about the pretty beaches or the money, she just wants to live her dream.

When Telson arrived at the island, she was shocked to see how terrible the living conditions of the stray cats in the area are. She had a hard time figuring out how to take care of so many cats outdoors and was challenged by the disturbing images she’s witnessed.

Fortunately, the cats that Telson took care of lived in Bowell’s enchanting preserve, where they could live freely and enjoy their lives with a full belly.

Telson loved the fun, safe preserve, but couldn’t stop thinking about the poor kitties on the street that had absolutely nowhere to go… Her heart went out to them, and she knew that she had to do something about it.

Bowell and Telson thought about a new way to help the strays and came up with a brand new initiative. For four months, the two women have rescued many cats. Some were ill, others were injured or frightened, but the women knew just how to approach and gain their trust.

Telson and Bowell spayed and neutered many kitties, helped some of them recuperate, and found forever homes for most of them. They were so happy to see so many cats enjoy their well-deserved happy ending.

Telson had learned a lot from her experience. She understood that it may be hard to see miserable and injured cats every day, but one by one, she made their lives so much better and eventually ended up helping so many of them. 

She realized that instead of sitting around and doing nothing, it’s always better to do something that little by little will become a fantastic endeavor.

Bowell has indeed chosen the right person for the position of a lifetime. Telson fulfilled her dream, Bowell has found a genuine cat-loving activist to help her make her envisions a reality, and both of them have found a lifelong friend in one another.

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