It was a special birthday on Sunday, August 23, 2020 at PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary in Alnwick/Haldimand Township.
The namesake for the sanctuary, PrimRose celebrated her 46th birthday amongst volunteers.
Due to COVID-19, the sanctuary couldn’t welcome visitors to celebrate this year, but people were invited to line up against the fence and greet some of the 55 donkeys, mules and hinnies that Burns and her volunteers has rescued.
PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary started 20 years ago by Sheila Burns. The goal of the sanctuary is for the protection, and rehabilitation of abused, neglected, and unwanted donkeys, mules and hinnies.
Burns said her love for donkeys began when she moved to the rural area of Georgetown.
“I wanted to have animals for a barn and I didn’t want to have sheep or goats and I’m nervous of horses. I met a lady with a donkey and she actually found PrimRose and that started me off.”
“It’s an absolute passion and I’m embarrassed that I have this passion, but I love them.”
Burns has had PrimRose for 26-years and each year they celebrate her birthday with cake and carrots for candles.
Volunteers stood around PrimRose who was proudly wearing a tiara and serenaded her with a rousing version of Happy Birthday.
Burns said there are about 33 volunteers that help out daily with the animals.
“My volunteers are my life. They are the absolute heart of this sanctuary.”
“They clean out the barn, they clean out the stalls, they clean out things you and I wouldn’t even think of touching.”
The community has also been very supportive of the sanctuary over the years. This year is particularly tough given COVID and the sanctuary is down approximately $65,000 due to events being cancelled.
PrimRose Donkey Sanctuary has been a registered charity for 15-years.
For donations go to https://www.primrosedonkeysanctuary.com/donate.htm