At the beginning of each charter season we select an Antigua based charity for our very generous guest donations. Most guests are happy to donate US$20 per charter towards the charity of our choice. This year, we have decided to support the brilliant work of THE DONKEY SANCTUARY; part of the Antigua & Barbuda Humane Society.
|Well cared for donkeys|
I took a quick trip out to meet Carol, the Shelter Manager, and importantly to meet the real stars of the show – the donkeys! They are located just outside of the village Bethesda – the countryside of Antigua.
There are a staggering 160 donkeys living at the Sanctuary, and each of them have names! I was lucky enough to meet the rock star of all donkeys “Stevie”. Stevie is a blind donkey but his senses are so heightened he knows exactly when a new jenny (female donkey) comes to town!
|Stevie the rock star donkey|
The Sanctuary is set on around 35 acres of breezy land with it’s own souvenir shop and donkey wall of fame – just a 20 minute ride from Jolly Harbour Marina and our base. There is also an infirmary for those donkeys who need special love and attention. As I was there during the hottest part of the day, some of the chaps were liming under the trees. They don’t seem to mind the sun but they get quite cross when it rains, apparently!
|Chilling out under the shade of the trees|
I was fortunate enough to see some young donkeys, too. Donkeys live to the ripe old age of 50 – I believe this is twice as long as a horse. They have a full medical check when they arrive and their teeth are the clue to their age and general health. Donations go towards the vet bills, feed etc.
|Relax – it’s donkey land in Antigua!|
If you are on charter with us in Antigua, I would encourage anyone with a love of animals to visit The Sanctuary here in Antigua; it’s heartwarming to have a donkey lean up against you so that he gets a scratch of the head and a kind word. Make it part of your island tour next time you are cruising Antigua.