David Chapman isn’t stressed about being evicted, even though it means quickly securing a new home for about 40 llamas.
Since 2005, Chapman and Lynne Milsom have run The Llama Sanctuary. The Chase area non-profit animal shelter is dedicated to the rescue, re-homing, rehabilitation and retirement of llamas and alpacas. On July 3, a post was shared on the Llama Sanctuary’s Facebook page stating it had been given 30 days’ notice to leave the property.
“It was completely out of the blue and we had no idea it was coming…,” said Chapman. “The llama sanctuary finds itself in the position where it has to find somewhere else, and very quickly.”
Chapman said there are currently about 40 llamas in their care that need to be moved, along with barns and other structures.
“We need a number of different paddocks to put the animals in,” said Chapman. “We have 39 here right now,and we have three more coming in. I mean, it’s a sanctuary so the number is fluctuating all the time.
“We generally re-home most of those that come to us. The ones that we keep, a lot of them are special needs, they’re either elderly or they have some ailments that need treatment or they have behavioural problems – we wouldn’t want to re-home them. The ones that are coming in are in a similar state… That’s just some of the day-to-day work or service that the sanctuary provides.”
Chapman said they’ve already found an ideal property in the Shuswap to relocate the sanctuary. But to secure the property, a down payment of $60,000 is needed by July 19.
“We then have until later in the year to actually get the rest of the funds,” said Chapman. “We are urgently seeking funds to secure this property.”
As of Thursday, July 7, more than $5,000 had been raised through a recently launched fundraiser titled A Forever Home for The Llama Sanctuary on fundrazr.com.
“Our goal is to raise $1.5 million in order to acquire a new and permanent home to be placed in trust for The Llama Sanctuary,” reads the fundraiser page. “Moving the barns, buildings and infrastructure and constructing new fences, which are inevitably required, is a very costly business. Your help would be very much appreciated.”
Despite all this sudden pressure, Chapman explained he and Milsom are trying to keep stress out of the picture.
“We do what we can each day and the rest of it we just hand over to a greater power,” laughed Chapman. “That’s the best we can say about that. Everything has been unfolding in an amazing synchronistic manner, with the right people coming along at the right time. We see this as achievable.
“I have no idea how it’s going to happen, I’ll say that. If we looked at it without any knowledge of the sanctuary, it would seem like an impossible task to get all of this done and everything moved and rebuilt again, but we did it, and somehow or another we can do it.”
Chapman said the sanctuary is still open to the public for guided tours that are booked in advance.
“We were busy yesterday and there seem to be a lot of interest now, especially with people coming along and saying how can we help. That’s really nice,” said Chapman.
In addition to the Fundrazr page, other donation options and information can be found at llamasanctuary.com.
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