I just came back home from a daily walk and it is still so surreal. Hardly no cars on the roads and less people movement seems to have made wildlife absolutely boom! Everywhere I look I see birds, singing, courting and building nests. This can only mean one thing: Baby bird season is here!
Normally this is something I think that Jenna at the sanctuary is actually looking forward to, as she loves feeding and caring for them ? This year everything is so different at the sanctuary, actually in many ways I think it is busier than normal, but with less helpers due to the restrictions.
Jenna and Lyz, together with only a handful of helpers, are now doing everything.
Feeding, caring, cleaning, sorting…. Everything also takes much longer as staff can’t team up; social distancing is happening at the sanctuary too! Everything needs to be sanitised, both before you use it and after, just in case – be that the handle of a door, the wheelbarrow or the hosepipe.
For Lyz phone-calls still come in and again we have seen an increase as many rescues seem to be full or closed. Most calls take longer as she will assess the need, advice if possible, rather than “collect – care – release”, this to minimise the people she comes in contact with. She also spends more time on the road as our transport team has been cut back to less than a handful, our shops and normal drop-off points are closed and we don’t want to encourage people to drive anywhere unless absolutely necessary.
We have been so lucky with food donations and we get things from Aldi UK (thank you!), Amazon wish-list (check it out here https://amzn.eu/9uE8XXQ) and businesses such as Natures Menu, Wetnose Animal Aid, Kellys Bakery and Ken’s Corn Stores. Obviously, every single donation brought to the sanctuary also has to be sanitised, and things from supermarkets need to be de-bagged which all add to the workload, to an already overstretched crew. Just the de bagging takes around 1 hour per day, sanitising probably another 30 minutes!
Extra waste from de-bagging means extra pressure on our bins and we could really use 1 or 2 skips to clear, but with funds being low this would be a luxury item so not really anything we can justify right now. As much as it is really needed. If anyone know a skip company willing to donate one it would be gratefully received!
I was interviewed by a journalist asking me how corona has impacted the sanctuary. My answer was simple:
Imagine that you have a business divided in two; one part makes money and one that spends it. We have been forced to shut the part that makes money but the part that spends is busier than ever.
So what do we do? Say no to animals? Well, that’s not going to happen – they still need us!
So instead we try to adapt.
We have been selling our amazing jams, marmalades and chutneys, delivering them to people in areas our essential workers need to go to anyway. This is bringing in extremely important funds to our PayPal.
We have also been bagging up manure at the horsefield selling them for 50 pence per bag.
We put more things on eBay than we have ever done before. This is all done from homes of volunteers. The posting is done by a volunteer who goes to the post office every week for her own business anyway (team work!). https://ebay.us/11xbBK
And we beg, we beg every single person we know to donate just £1 to our PayPal firstname.lastname@example.org.
Start a Penny Jar and save 1 and 2 pennies for us for when the crisis is over.
Send us a cheque for the money you don’t spend buying fancy coffees or on buss fares.
Sort out your wardrobes, closets and shelves to help us kick-start our shops when we are allowed to open again. (we can’t collect quite yet but please keep hold till restrictions are lifted!)
Follow us here, share our posts, invite your friends.
Last but not least I’d like to thank people who are offering to help hands on. Sadly, we can’t accept that kind of help right now, as much as it is needed! Could I ask you all to hold that thought just for a little while? We will need that help when the world opens again ?
Together we got this.
Stay safe and stay positive!