A Message from Rob Atkinson, CEO
My Dear Friends,
We are at the end of a long, icy winter. The days lengthen and grow warmer, birds and frogs start to give voice, and insects emerge and stretch their wings; spring is just around the corner. Our Girls have a glorious summer ahead, filled with days of dappled sunlight beneath trees, wholesome grass, cooling lakes and creeks. This year they will continue their journeys through the eventful lives that fate laid before them. All of our elephants were born in the warm cradles of Asia and Africa, from whence they were stolen long ago. I wonder, as they stretch out in the heat of the summer to come, play joyfully in the ponds, or stand in close, quiet companionship with a dear friend, whether they will have any sense of coming home. I hope so.
As always, we will be rejoicing in the stories we will share with you of our Girls’ days and remembering with sweet sadness those who have passed. Our excitement over the launch of the Elecam is going to be difficult to contain for much longer—and it won’t have to be! All of us at the Sanctuary share your sense of anticipation as developments in our Education Gallery and Welcome Center move forward. Our program of Protected Contact elephant handling is going full-steam ahead, and we’ll bring you news of how that progresses.
There will be difficult times for sure—anyone who takes on the responsibility of caring for animals knows that is inevitable—but the sense of purpose that runs through the Sanctuary will see us through. Behind the scenes, whether in the offices making sure the business is running properly, or sweltering in the barns and workshops, the staff will continue their labor of love. Away from the elephants, who are left in peace, everywhere will be buzzing with activity, and all is for the Girls. Our elephants are safe in the hands of our staff, who in turn deserve nothing less than the same protection they unconditionally give to the Girls. I will make sure they get it.
As far as I’m concerned the new year starts now, so to our Girls, to our staff and, of course, to you our dear supporters—Happy New Year!