Meet Ana, our June Volunteer of the Month! Ana currently volunteers on multiple animal care shifts during the week, helping on the morning and evening shifts! To say Ana is a wonderful volunteer is a huge understatement – no matter what task you give her, you know she’s going to give it her all. She’s also super talented at training new volunteers, and her friendly personality makes everyone feel at ease! Ana is also willing to show up early and stay late, which is a huge help to our animal care staff. Ana, we cannot thank you enough for all you do for Heartland. We love you!

1. What do you do in your time outside of Heartland? I spend a disproportionate amount of time with our rescue dachshund, Peanut. And when I can tear myself away from her, my husband and I love to travel and be active, especially hiking and skiing. I also volunteer with Midwest Dachshund Rescue transporting rescued dachshunds wherever they need to go within its network.

2. How did you find out about Heartland? What got you interested? I follow a lot of dog rescues and farm sanctuaries on Facebook. Thanks to Facebook’s algorithms (Cambridge Analytica issue aside), Heartland appeared in my feed one day. I had no idea a farm sanctuary existed in my own community! I immediately signed up for a volunteer session and have never looked back.

3. Can you describe a favorite/memorable moment or event at HFS? Oh my, so many from which to choose; however, one moment sticks out because it was both heartbreaking and heartwarming. I was working the shift when Harriet, a potbellied pig, first arrived at Heartland. She was rescued from horrible circumstances and arrived in poor health. Seeing her so sick and scared was heartbreaking, but we were buoyed knowing that she was now safe and loved. Seeing her settle into a clean stall loaded with fluffy straw, fresh water and healthy food moved us to tears. It was a profound moment and reinforced the importance of why sanctuaries like Heartland exist.

On a lighter note — when I first started, I was tasked with tending to Popcorn and Tofu, two rescued Cornish chickens, who were very young at the time. They were allowed to roam freely inside what we call the “animal trailer” (think: portable office trailers you see at construction sites). As I tried to leave the trailer, the two farm cats – Otto and Poppy – were persistent about trying to get inside. All I could think about was Sylvester-the-Cat trying to eat Tweety Bird in all those “Looney Tunes” cartoons growing up! I was stuck inside. I didn’t know what to do. So, I opened the trailer window and started calling out for help. Such an embarrassing rookie move as I learned that the cats peacefully co-exist with the chickens.

4. What is your favorite part about volunteering for HFS? Two equal favorites. 1) Hands-on interaction with the animals. I appreciate that Heartland trusts us to care for all these beautiful creatures. 2) Working with friendly, like-minded people working for a common goal.

5. What do you wish other people knew about Heartland? To modify a quote from author Karen Davison: “Saving one animal will not change the world, but surely for that one animal, the world will change forever.” Heartland is an important organization that makes a profound difference in the lives of so many wonderful, sentient animals who deserve a soft place to land. Equally important, Heartland opens the hearts and minds of so many people who visit. It’s such a magical place and worthy of supporting. And there are so many easy ways people can help – volunteerism, financial contributions, in-kind donations, etc. Even something as simple as spreading the word about the sanctuary helps!

6. If you could adopt only one HFS animal, who would you pick and why? Yikes, that’s such a tough question to answer because all the animals are so special with their unique personalities and hilarious idiosyncrasies. Assuming I had the right setup with enough land, I would love to adopt Esther, a Nigerian Dwarf goat. Goats are like dogs with hooves — incredibly endearing, curious and playful attention seekers with a touch of naughtiness.

1 Comment for June Volunteer of the Month: Analisa Rudy

June Volunteer of the Month: Analisa Rudy - Heartland Farm Sanctuary | June 4, 2018 at 10:25 am

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