Wind Song Animal Sanctuary
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Photography by Dante Fontana © Style Media Gorup
Gallery: Wind Song Animal Sanctuary – Best in Show – Aug. 2014 [7 Images] Click any image to expand.
Having rescued aging 4-H horses for more than two decades, husband and wife team Thomas and Rene Bender were uniquely qualified to take the reins when, in 2011, the founders of A Chance For Bliss (ACFB) animal sanctuary made the difficult decision to retire. Following the surrender of several animals to the Humane Society, the Benders relocated the remaining menagerie to their 27-acre ranch in Lincoln. Shortly thereafter, the sanctuary was renamed Wind Song after a beloved ACFB Arabian mare lost to cancer. Now in its third year of operation, the non-profit forever home for senior and special needs animals provides shelter for more than 50 residents, including pigs, goats, dogs, cats and horses. According to Thomas, the need for their services is so great that within a month of opening its doors, the sanctuary already had a waiting list. In light of the incredible demand, the couple hopes that in time they can double their current capacity. “It’s about awareness, reaching out to the public, developing volunteers at the sanctuary, giving good advice when people call, and building a good relationship with the local shelters and other agencies,” he explains. “Also, increasing our donor list and learning to write grants; without them, we cannot grow and help the animals that don’t make it here to Wind Song.” Currently, the Benders rely entirely on donations to care for their four-legged family and have partnered with other rescue organizations, including the Sacramento County Animal Shelter, to give animals they can’t place one last chance. “We have met many people who come to meet the animals and discuss the philosophy of Wind Song, learning the animals’ previous lives, their personalities and character,” Thomas shares. “They leave knowing these gentle beings will be taken care of until they pass over the rainbow bridge.”
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