Animal rescue centre 'humbled' by response to crisis
AN animal rescue centre’s staff have been “humbled” by the response to their call for donations and volunteers to tide them over during the coronavirus pandemic.
Wetheriggs Animal Rescue and Conservation Centre, near Greta Bridge, was in crisis mode after many of its older volunteers had to self-isolate and its regular income from visitors ran dry.
However, people rallied round after the problems were highlighted in the Teesdale Mercury.
Terry Bowes, of the centre, said: “There was an absolutely unbelievable response to the article. People in the dale are amazing. We’ve had farmers turn up with bags of animal feed and people have made many small donations. We have had people who have no money ring up with messages of support. This experience is very, very humbling.”
A number of people have also offered to help by mucking out and feeding the animals.
Because of social distancing rules, the centre now has two shifts of four volunteers working each day.
Mr Bowes said: “I must say a huge thank you to our volunteers who are risking their own health to come in and look after the animals. We have more than 1,200 animals that need tending each day.”
The weekly running cost of the centre is about £2,500.
The centre was recently given a boost by the Catherine Cookson Foundation, which gave £1,000, along with the host of donations from Teesdale residents.
The centre has also seen a rise in the number of animals being cared for as people staying home are finding more animals in need of help.
Mr Bowes said there had been a surge in the number of birds injured by flying into windows, including a tawny owl.
Wetheriggs has also welcomed the births of a number of goats, piglets, lambs, chicks and ducklings.
Anyone who wishes to help the centre can contact Mr Bowes on 07764 352835.ed