I had the pleasure of volunteering at the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary with my sister, Devany. WFAS is revered in Vegan and animal lover circles alike. We got the chance to work with some wonderful people from the staff to the other volunteers, as well some amazing animals.
Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary adheres to the philosophy that kindness and respect to animals is essential and that all living beings share this earth and animals are here with us, not for us. They welcome volunteers and please note, you do not have to be Vegan to help out. However, if you are interested in finding out more about living a compassionate lifestyle towards animals, this is a great place to explore your options. Volunteering is easy. You simply go to the WFAS volunteer site and fill out their form to request a date and time. Someone will get back to you quickly and confirm details. That site address is http://woodstocksanctuary.org/join/volunteer/
The staff and volunteers are all welcoming and clearly have a passion for what they do. I particularly loved the fact that the staff was so knowledgeable about each animal, down to the chickens, and loved to share the information about each resident’s story and quirks. They even made it a point to remind you to interact and love on the animals as much as possible, even while you were working. We had a really sweet sheep (plus on particularly gregarious goat named Burt) cuddling session where all got down on our knees and they let us pet and nuzzle them. It was truly a special experience.
The majority of our work revolved around cleaning stalls and laying down new hay. It went quickly because everyone chipped in and worked together so well. It didn’t hurt that the animals were always around making you laugh when they got in your way or sat in the pile of hay you were just about to muck.
Another touching rescue story was the tale of Fawn, who I also had the pleasure of meeting. She was born on an industrial farm to a dairy cow mother and was injured at birth. The farmer was kind enough to give her to a caring woman who tried her best to treat her injured leg but felt Fawn was getting worse and might have to be euthanized. She turn to the Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary for help and received it. The staff brought Fawn to the Cornell Veterinarian Hospital where the staff fell in love with her and successfully performed an operation on her legs. She now walks with the help of braces and continues to get physical therapy. Her road to recovery is long, but she is happy, healthy, and well-loved by the staff and volunteers at WFAS. Fawn was incredibly sweet and loving and it was an honor to spend time with her.
If you can’t make it out to visit the sanctuary, please consider helping their cause and the animals by donating on the site: http://woodstocksanctuary.org/join/donate/. Please note, that they will be moving to a new 150-acre property in High Falls, NY this summer. There, they will have six times more land and a bigger better facility to rescue more animals, run more advocacy programs, and host more educational programs. I’m very excited to see the new place and all the wonderful opportunities it will bring.
Check out my follow-up post to this about the town of Woodstock and all the fun things you can do before or after your volunteer time at WFAS.