1. Give love to animals with trauma
Most, if not all animals in sanctuaries have been through a lot of trauma and pain. Some have been trapped in tiny cages with no freedom, no fresh air to breathe, their babies violently dragged away from them. Many have watched horrific scenes of bloodshed and abuse or experienced it themselves, as well as many more monstrosities which take place in various farms, slaughterhouses, animal testing labs and even innocent looking homes.
Regardless of the reason, they need to receive unconditional love and care. Giving love to a being who hasn’t had that, is a selfless act, and is directly making a positive impact to their lives. Showing animals that they are worthy and deserving of love makes a big difference to them. Animals are sentient beings who know much more than we think and give them credit for, and can feel the difference between love and hatred.
Photo taken at the amazing Tower Hills Sanctuary that is run by the incredible and relentless Fiona Oakes. Watch her documentary “Running for good“!
2. MEET GREAT PEOPLE
People who help out in sanctuaries tend to have a lot of empathy and care and want to change the world. If you are reading this it is likely you feel the same way. Volunteering at a sanctuary can put you around new people who share similar beliefs and morals with you and can help you form meaningful new friendships or connections.
Connection is super important not only when it comes to activism, but also to remain in high spirits and feel loved, understood and not alone. Meaningful human connection spreads love and love is the true driving force in this universe which creates genuine peace. The more connection there is, the more love that is shared, and the better the world becomes.
3. Giving Love Inspires More Love
By giving out love and radiating positive energy you are changing the world one act of love at a time. When you are doing loving things and are in a loving state, you inspire people to give and love, and the more people there are handing out love, the better this world becomes.
Sometimes we look past small acts of kindness such as helping animals and think that it doesn’t matter or make a difference because billions of animals are going to be slaughtered and abused each year anyway, but we mustn’t allow ourselves to get into this mindset. If no one helped out, even more atrocities would occur. At least by focusing on what you can do, instead of what you can’t, you can save sentient lives or at least improve the lives of our fellow non-human animal companions, which improves their lives too.
Bringing more love into this world by being selfless, creates a ripple of love. When your love is spread to someone else e.g. an animal in the sanctuary or the staff in the sanctuary, they feel the love, which then passes onto someone else and then someone else and so forth. Loving states of being raise the frequency of this earth, and this includes the state of being of non-human animals. The less traumatized animals there are, the more love there is. We can spread love faster than we think, every act of kindness makes a difference.
Photo taken at the wonderful FRIEND animal sanctuary in Kent, a wonderful place to help out and meet like-minded people. Always smiles at this place!
4. Learn new things
Volunteering can help you learn new skills and learn new things as there are many different tasks which you will need to help with. Learning is incredibly important and good for us as human beings and keeps our minds stimulated and healthy.
For example, working with animals can teach patience. All animals have unique personalities and needs just like us humans do. They need time and effort to be understood, especially when it comes to animals coming from traumatic backgrounds. Bonding with traumatised animals is rarely quick, but this teaches you to be more understanding and patient.
Also, looking after animals can be really grounding as you have to be more present. Interacting with animals and giving them the attention they need is everything for them in that moment and the appreciation they radiate is profound. When we connect to this energy, we too go back to basics and remember the importance of the now and the simplicity of life. We not only learn about animals and how to properly look after them when we volunteer in sanctuaries, they also teach us.
Volunteering teaches us to give without the expectation of receiving anything back. It teaches us to be selfless and caring.
These are important skills which benefit you as a person overall and would really aid your personal spiritual growth. The more skills you learn, the more they can be passed on and shared too. Always remember the ripple or domino effect.
5. Mental & Physical health
It is scientifically proven that being around animals is good for our health and wellbeing. Interacting with animals alleviates symptoms of depression, helps to combat feelings of loneliness, can reduce blood pressure and/or stress, helps to keep us calm/relaxed, and so much more. Making connections with animals works both ways and ameliorates your, and the animal’s wellbeing. Walking dogs or playing with animals can be good exercise too.
Animal Sanctuaries in the UK
As well as volunteering, sanctuaries are in constant need of donation for resources to look after the animals already there, or to bring in more rescued animals which have no place to go. If you cannot volunteer, please donate if you can, no matter how little, as it makes a huge difference.
Below are a list of some good animal sanctuaries to look into and donate to:
- ABC Animal Sanctuary, West Sussex
- Bleakholt Animal Sanctuary, Lancashire
- Bransby Home of Rest for Horses, Lincolnshire
- Brinsley Animal Rescue, Nottingham
- Brook Farm Animal Sanctuary, Northamptonshire
- Brownbread Horse Rescue, Sussex
- Buttercups Sanctuary for Goats, Kent
- Crosskennan Lane Animal Sanctuary, Co Antrim
- Farm Animal Sanctuary, Worcestershire
- Fearne Animal Sanctuary, Somerset
- FRIEND Animal Rescue, Kent
- Freshfields Animal Rescue, Liverpool and Caernarfon
- Hillfields Animal Sanctuary, Worcestershire
- Hillside Animal Sanctuary, Norwich
- Hope Pastures, Leeds
- Hugletts Wood Farm Animal Sanctuary, Sussex
- HULA Animal Rescue, Milton Keynes
- Kays Hill Farm Animal Sanctuary, Co Durham
- Margaret Green Animal Rescue, Dorset
- Mountains Animal Rescue, Angus
- PACT Animal Sanctuary, Norfolk & Suffolk
- Park Farm Animal Sanctuary, Ayrshire
- Raystede Animal Welfare, Sussex
- Redgate Farm Animal Sanctuary, Leicestershire
- Remus Memorial Horse Sanctuary, Essex
- Severn Valley Donkey and Dog Rescue, Shropshire
- Sussex Horse Rescue, Sussex
- The Retreat Animal Rescue, Kent
- Thornberry Animal Sanctuary, S Yorkshire
- Tower Hill Stables Animal Sanctuary, Essex
- Willows Animal Sanctuary, Aberdeenshire