Meet the Founders

Elizabeth Shafiroff

Lindsey Spielfogel

We both grew up in NYC and attended the same high school, but it wasn’t until years later that we reconnected after learning through Facebook, that we shared a passion for saving dogs, primarily pitbulls. Very soon after this, we teamed up together and started rescuing and finding homes for dozens of pitbulls that were on the euthanasia list at the animal care and control centers in NYC and this was the beginning of our current journey saving the lives of dogs and animals across the world.

It wasn’t until a trip to Bali that our lives were forever changed. When we arrived in Indonesia for a vacation we were shocked to see how the local street dogs were living. There were many dogs that were starving, covered in fleas, ticks and maggots and some were even poisoned by locals, and we were horrified by how these dogs were treated. We had to do something but at that point we only had local experience rescuing pitbulls from NYC but we would not turn a blind eye because of where these animals are located. We weren’t able to find any nonprofit organizations that were doing what we wanted to do, so we decided to start our own nonprofit that would aim to help dogs worldwide, with a focus on developing countries. We decided that we would start our work in Central America and our first trip was to Costa Rica. We are currently working in multiple counties in Central America including Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, St. Lucia, and Colombia. We travel to each country that we work in and meet with local rescuers to get a feel of what is most needed in each country. From there, we help local rescuers by providing what they need including food, veterinary care, medicine as well as hire individuals to clean and care of the dogs at the shelters. Each country is different and in the Dominican Republic the rescue that we work with asks if they can fly in dogs to NYC because they are over flooded with dogs and they have reached capacity. In this case, we help by receiving dogs so the shelter can continue to help save new dogs. In Nicaragua they have been in need of money to build a shelter as well as fund the first dog ambulance.

Our Mission

The aim of Global Strays is to come to the aid of suffering animals mainly, stray dogs around the world and protect them from neglect and abuse. To reach this mission we are currently working in Central America, specifically Nicaragua, Costa Rica and in the Dominican Republic. We meet with animal rescue organizations in these countries to witness the work they do first-hand. Based on the individual needs of the organization, we fundraise and distribute grants to these organizations. Some examples of how the grants are used are for food, medications, and spay and neutering initiatives. With our grants, we hope to empower these groups to continue their work in saving stray dogs and cats. We hope to expand to many other countries around the world with a focus on developing nations. We have also teamed up with Social Tees Rescue Animal Foundation in New York City to help them rescue dogs from high kill shelters across the United States.

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