Working at animal sanctuaries

Meyersaurus

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Hi there,

I have recently been thinking about my goals (professional and other) a lot and I have pretty much come to the conclusion that running (or rather working at) an animal sanctuary would be my absolute dream job. In the best case scenario I could even include psychotherapy with animals etc.
Animal sanctuaries are shelters for rescued animals (pets and farm animals) in case anyone was wondering; their purpose is to give the animals the life they deserve and care for them in an actual humane way.
Now, I realize that this profession does not entail great income and often relies on governmental support or donations etc.

I have been trying to find internships at such animal sanctuaries (like "Stiftung ATLANTIS" in Germany) but I have been struggling with a) finding animal sanctuaries that are within a range of accessibility for me (I live in Luxembourg/Netherlands) and b) hire interns.

Maybe someone has some experience in that/knows something they could help me with?

Thanks!
 

rogerjolly

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Hi Meyersaurus,

I would say you have two ways forward.

One. Use the Michael Heseltine approach. He decided to sacrifice his early years earning wads of cash so he could then concentrate on what he really wanted to do in life. His ambition, though, was much less laudable than yours. He went into politics.

Two. Sanctuaries are generally as poor as church mice and cannot afford to pay even minimum wage. They mostly rely on voluntary help. Find one that impresses you. Offer your services. Move there. Support yourself in any job you can find and volunteer as much as you can. Gain as much experience with different organisations as possible. This might involve moving on to another one say every six months.

Some people might call this bumming around Europe. I would call it giving yourself a most excellent further education and you never know where it might lead.

There are tons of sanctuaries in the UK of varying quality.

Good luck.

Roger.
 
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Meyersaurus

Meyersaurus

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Hi Meyersaurus,

I would say you have two ways forward.

One. Use the Michael Heseltine approach. He decided to sacrifice his early years earning wads of cash so he could then concentrate on what he really wanted to do in life. His ambition, though, was much less laudable than yours. He went into politics.

Two. Sanctuaries are generally as poor as church mice and cannot afford to pay even minimum wage. They mostly rely on voluntary help. Find one that impresses you. Offer your services. Move there. Support yourself in any job you can find and volunteer as much as you can. Gain as much experience with different organisations as possible. This might involve moving on to another one say every six months.

Some people might call this bumming around Europe. I would call it giving yourself a most excellent further education and you never know where it might lead.

There are tons of sanctuaries in the UK of varying quality.

Good luck.

Roger.

Thank you so so much, you speak to my soul!
I think the "Michael Heseltine" approach will eventually probably be the most efficient one, especially when I do volunteer work.
You calling this "further education" has actually touched something! You know, all my life I've been taught that going to college (bachelor and master diploma) were the only way you can be successful, but recently I have been thinking a lot about this. Personally, I don't think that this is the way for me (I'm a bachelor student right now, but I don't think I want to continue University after this). But before you said this, I was thinking of switching to an apprenticeship and then start off work (kind of like Michael Heseltine) but now, I think this would do soooo much better.
Thank you for your insights, I'm really happy to have read them and I kind of feel enlightened in a way:blush:
 

Emma JC

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If you research WWOOFing, there are lots of farms in Europe and you may be able to find vegan ones. I know that Jake the Vegan Athlete and his girlfriend Nicole did a WWOOFing tour last year and seemed to really enjoy it, although it is hard work and vegan farms are not likely to include animals. Maybe a combo of working at sanctuaries and working on vegan farms?

Good luck with your decisions.

Emma JC
 
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