I first visited FRIEND Animal Rescue last year on one of their open days (which I blogged about here). They have a lovely site near Maidstone in Kent which just happens to be about half way between my house and my relatives on the South Coast, so Mama Plumes and I met up with my Cousins and their 10 week old baby son.
Here’s an excerpt from FRIENDS website about what they do (as I couldn’t say it better myself)
WHAT WE DO
Today, FRIEND is a working animal sanctuary with around 100 farm animals and companion animals. Animals find their way here in all sorts of ways. Some are rescued from places of abuse, some arrive following the death of their guardian. Some despicable people abandon their animals by throwing them over the fence. No matter how they get here, they are all welcome to live the rest of their lives as naturally as possible with little human interaction.
We offer a no kill, free roaming (as far as possible and safe) home to cows, sheep, goats, chickens, ducks, geese and turkeys. Our 30+ pigs live in their own paddock with wallows. Some of our cats are feral and some are house dwellers. All our dogs love their walks in our meadow.
It was lovely to see these animals roaming free and getting so close to them. Some of the pigs were very friendly and came up for a stroke and a nuzzle. I particularly love cows, so I was glad to be able to go in the field with them as this wasn’t possible last year.
Some of the animals are shyer, like the sheep and the llama so we just let them do their thing and admired them from afar. Some, like the goats, enjoyed very much getting in everybody’s business especially if you had some food on you!
We also enjoyed some fab vegan food, Mum and I had bean stew and potato and I had a piece of gorgeous carrot cake with a mug of tea.
Spending time with animals really re-iterates to me why I’m vegan and inspires me to continue participating in vegan activism events.
FRIEND have open days and volunteer days throughout the year so check out their Facebook page to keep up with events. If you aren’t able to visit you can donate to FRIEND via their website.
Here’s a few photos of our day.