About LAPA

About us

LAPA was founded by Natalia Chumak in early 2013. We celebrate LAPA’s birthday on the 1st March. We will be celebrating out 10th anniversary on the 1st of March 2023!

Our work has evolved considerably over the years but we remain a small charity run by a team of dedicated volunteers.

There is a lot of animal suffering in Russia. We focus our efforts on cats and dogs. There are millions of strays and abandoned pets in Russia whose future is bleak due to cruelty, neglect, disease and harsh weather conditions.  We work in a number of small locations in Central Russia and do what we can to help at least some of those who have noone else to help them.

Through our Rescue and Shelter Support, Veterinary Treatment and Rehoming Programmes we help those who need our help right now. We also work on preventing animal suffering in the future through our Neutering Programme (by reducing the number of animals who will end up in the streets). Further, we have created and run for many years a unique Educational Programme for children (by teaching them how to treat animals responsibly). In 2021 we donated our Educational Programme to a Russia-based charity in order to increase the reach of the programme.

Natalia Chumak

Founder and Trustee
Natalia is an English qualified solicitor and is a partner in a law firm in the City of London. Before founding LAPA, Natalia had rescued and helped many cats and dogs in various countries including Russia, England, Tajikistan, Mauritius, Spain and BVI. Natalia has 2 rescue pets – 1 cat and 1 dog with special needs.

Simon Moore

Simon is a retired solicitor and a former partner in a law firm in the City of London. He is an avid animal lover, an experienced amateur ornithologist and has an interest in the marine environment.

Jess Sterry

Rehoming Support
Jess has a background in marine biology and adult nursing and joined our UK team after she adopted one of our rescues. Jess is actively involved in all aspects of our Rehoming Programme with a keen interest in dog training and post-adoption support.

Yulia Volkova

Shelter Support, Rescue and Neutering
Yulia runs our home based shelter in Central Russia and has over 10 years experience in rescue, TNR (trap, neuter, release) and animal care work. She manages pretty much single-handedly in the region of 100 animals (cats and dogs) at our shelter many of whom require daily special care or treatment. She arranges veterinary treatment for those shelter animals who need it and also regularly conducts rescue missions in her local area. In addition, Yulia is responsible for managing our neutering programme in one of our four neutering locations.

Oksana Klimantova

Dog training, socialisation and behaviour assessment
Oksana is a certified dog trainer and behaviourist. She has completed dog behaviour/training course at St Petersburg State University, The Russian Canine Federation, The School of wolf study (where she worked with wolves for a year). Oksana conducts behaviour assessment for LAPA dogs who we have provisionally selected for our Rehoming Programme in the UK. She also boards, socialises and trains our dogs as part of this selection process and in preparation for their adoption in the UK.

Irina Gibert

Design and Social sites
Irina is an animal loving interior architect. She is responsible for curating LAPA brand identity design and LAPA Instagram feed.

Ekaterina Nikitina

Fundraising Support
A former journalist and editor-in-chief of a major Russian-language publication in London, Ekaterina made a career shift towards climate change and sustainable development few years ago. Currently working for CDP, a non-profit organisation that runs a global disclosure system for companies to help them manage their environmental impacts. Ekaterina provides valuable advice and hands on support for some of our fundraising initiatives.