Donkey assisted therapy was one of the areas of our work that founder, Dr Elisabeth Svendsen MBE, was passionate about. She recognised the positive relationship that donkeys have with humans, and children especially. Our six Donkey Assisted Therapy Centres around the UK provide more than 46,000 sessions for children with additional needs every year. But our donkeys benefit too.
Joey was the 8,730th donkey to join our family here at the Sanctuary in 2002 from his home in Devon. It soon became evident that Joey was a bright, intelligent donkey who loved lots of contact with people and plenty of stimulation and fun.
In 2005 Joey underwent special training for donkey assisted therapy and joined the team at our Manchester centre.
Riding instructor, Robina Melling, says: "Joey has a cheeky twinkle in his eye and loves to play Tug O War with his friends and fling wellies around his paddock. He is absolutely superb with the chidlren in the arena and is incredibly steady, never putting a foot wrong. Joey also adores meeting the public and we often take him to local shows."
The Donkey Assisted Therapy Centres are a perfect way to give donkeys like Joey a rewarding and fulfilling role.