St. Albans cat sanctuary focuses on educating the public about feral and community cats

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ST. ALBANS, Maine (WABI) A cat sanctuary in St. Albans is going about things differently than most animal shelters.

Spirits Place is trying to change the way people think about feral and community cats.

"Spirits Place is a grassroots artistic free-roaming environment that takes in feral, stray, community cats," said Lee Palmer, founder and owner of Spirits Place. "And we work with people, kids, schools to educate, empower, and teach people accountability and responsibility to build healthy cats, healthy people, and healthy communities."

This isn't your typical shelter -- cats get to roam around the property as they please.

"They're happy, they're peaceful, because they're not controlled," said Palmer. "If they want to be in they can be in, if they want to be out they can be out."

Palmer says that educating people on spaying and neutering and overall animal welfare is the most important thing for them.

They hold educational programming to help teach people about the subject.

"What we're really trying to do here is change people's minds and attitudes about the stray cat population," said Palmer. "And we tell people here we don't have a stray cat problem, we have a people problem."

"If you don't change minds and attitudes, all you're doing is constantly spay/neutering. It's a vicious cycle."

Spirits Place also has a store where they sell a lot of cat-inspired pictures, pottery, and other creations.

If you'd like to find out more information about how to volunteer, donate, or more, you can visit SpiritsPlace.org, or their Facebook page.