Raystede Volunteering | September 2023

Posted on 15th Sep 2023 - Share this a day in the life

On Wednesday 13 September 2023, 9 members of our Uckfield team spent the day volunteering at Raystede Centre for Animal Welfare.

We spoke to Thomas Kianfar about his experience:

“The volunteering day started with a briefing in the café followed by a short walk down to the field where we were instructed by two of the members of Raystede’s skilful landscaping team to carry out various tasks in order to remove the overgrown brambles in and around the horse fields. If left untreated for too long these can pose trip hazards or alternatively allow for rabbits to create holes which a horse’s legs can get stuck in. At first it didn’t look like there were that many brambles, but by the end of the day we had filled two truck loads!

The duty I assigned myself was ‘chief forker’ whereby I had to use a pitchfork to grab the larger clumps of bramble and load into the dump truck. There were 9 of us from SG working in the field and I must say we were very efficient.

One of my favourite parts of the day was seeing my career progression go from forker to raker (only one of the Raystede workers had been doing this previously so it was an honour to be handed the rake when they had to go and work elsewhere) and then a promotion to leaf blower all in the same day!

The day then finished with a guided tour where we got to meet horses, rabbits, donkeys, goats, cats and tortoises. All of us were delighted to witness how well looked after the animals are. Fun fact – Raystede has 15 terrapins but are soon planning on having 300 thanks to a massively upgraded pond area.

For anyone considering a volunteering day, I would say it is a great feeling that you are making a difference to what goes on at a charity and receiving such grateful feedback from the staff was pleasing. Additionally, it’s a change of scenery and you get to experience a completely different working day.”

About Raystede Centre for Animal Welfare

Raystede is one of the most diverse rescue centres in the UK, caring for many different species of animal. The staff, volunteers, and supporters help more than 1,200 vulnerable animals each year from a 43-acre site.

More information: raystede.org

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