Filling up the toolbox

Starting up an animal sanctuary sounds easy, right? Ha! Hardly. But it is doable. And it helps to pick up the right set of tools. Best Friends just finished another "How to Start an Animal Sanctuary" workshop. Here’s what a few people had to say about the experience.

Claire Peachey came looking for a reality check about the difficulties and challenges of running a sanctuary. Her discovery? "It’s going to take a lot of work!" Fortunately, she was able to brainstorm with others in the workshop chasing the same goal. She came away with some practical info, too, such as how to build a good cat enclosure. Little details like that are sprinkled all throughout the workshop.

Jen Hilsher came wanting to learn all aspects of starting and running a sanctuary. For three years, Jen has been doing research for the sanctuary she plans to open in Tennessee. As she looked back on the workshop, she said, "It really hit home that we have to work at this together. It’s our responsibility as citizens to stop ignoring the problem." Jen wants her sanctuary to first influence middle Tennessee, and then to influence the entire state. Go, Jen!

Beth Montes said, "It now seems doable and possible." In fact, one of the consistent comments across the group was how helpful they all found the process of meeting and creating a network of like-minded people: a support network for questions, encouragement, and ideas. It made the goal seem more obtainable to them all. So if you have a hankering to start an animal sanctuary, please sign up for the next workshop and start filling up your own toolbox!

Written by David Dickson. Photos by Molly Wald.