From: Jason Wolboldt , Volunteer
(About the author: Jason is at Happy Trails on an average of about four days a week. He has been volunteering at Happy Trails for about three years, and has been instrumental in many projects including the installation of new fencing, repairs and maintenance on the barns and shelters, he picks up over a ton of grain each week and distributes it throughout the sanctuary, he has taken on the monumental task of organizing the sanctuary and all of our supplies and tools, he has adopted five goats, he cleans the shelters on the weekends, and is truly irreplaceable. We have no idea what we’d do without Jason.)
For me, Happy Trails has helped me act on my deepest passions. What Happy Trails stands for is one of the things that are truly good in this world. Humanity in general has become detached from the other animals we share this earth with, particularly farm animals, who have been embedded into our consciousness to exist only for one purpose; to die and become someone's evening meal. Because we have done this for so long and so many others have accepted this, it has become a reality in so many minds. This has blinded us to the reality of their ability to suffer, to feel fear and stress, and the desire for friendship, comfort, and happiness. As a result, farm animals have become commodities in factory farms and have horribly disrespected and mistreated to the point of extreme cruelty. Happy Trails is a peaceful revolt against that. Rescuing these animals who have been abused, neglected, and forgotten has not only helped the particular animals who have been rescued, but it helps all animals. The simple awareness that there are people that see these animals for who they are and want to help them brings a different way of seeing things to others and so helps kindle the flame of compassion.
Being a part of an organization like this has given me a new life and changed who I am. It's been an absolute joy to work with the inspiring animals and good people every week. Every time I get to go to the sanctuary is like a breath of fresh air. You leave the daily struggles and stress of work and enter into a place that is good and simple. You walk through the sanctuary and see the ducks and geese playing in their pools, the pigs napping outside in the sun, the chickens taking a dust bath, the horses running and playing, and the goats playing king of the mountain on the jungle gym and you see them experiencing this kind of pure joy. One that penetrates deeper than television ever could. Its the joy of being alive and free.