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Our Team

Our most important team members – the donkeys!

Saffron

Saffron

Saffron, mother to Pippin and our oldest donkey. Saffron is the matriarch of our donkey herd. She is very vocal, especially at feed times and loves nothing better than a good bottom scratch. She has even been known to reverse up to people and ask for a scratch!

Saffy does not always enjoy going indoors and so her favourite visits are the ones where she can stay outside eating.

Bo Peep

Bo Peep

Bo Peep is our next oldest donkey and mother to Pixie and Millie. Bo Peep is a quiet soul and will enjoy a cuddle on her own terms. She has a special feeling for people who are poorly, who need a bit of a boost, or who are real animal lovers.

She will make a bee line for certain people on visits and quite often we find that the person has worked with horses or kept donkeys. Bo Peep enjoys a quiet neck rub or chest scratch.

Pippin

Pippin

Pippin is the first donkey that we bred. She is a brilliant therapy donkey and has done visits with her mum, Saffy, since she was 8 weeks old.

She loves playing football, running around the field and stealing apples!

Pixie

Pixie

Pixie lives up to her name. She loves going on visits, giving cuddles and eating ginger biscuits! She is a real poser and loves having her photo taken.

Her favourite things are trying to bully Pippin and chasing Gordon the cat.

Millie

Second daughter to Bo Peep, she is our youngest donkey and is an absolute sweetheart. She started going out on therapy visits when she was 3 months old.

She loves zooming, carrots and has carried on the Minidonk tradition of chasing Gordon the cat.

Rubik

Rubik is a very clever donkey, or shall we say mischievous problem solver! He officially joined the Minidonk team in April 2018. He started young as a therapy donkey, so has shown Alfie the ropes, and has naturally become the leader.

Rubik enjoys eating (all the time!), playing with Alfie and agility training.

Alfie

Alfie is like a big fluffy teddy bear, he is very cuddly and enjoys being stroked. He also officially joined the Minidonk team in April 2018, and has taken to doing visits very well.

Alfie’s favourite things to do are rolling in the dirt, knocking over water buckets and throwing around his orange ball.

Gordon

Gordon is not a donkey, he is a pussycat in every sense of the word. He loves a cuddle and a face scratch. He is bullied by the donkeys but loves it when they are all tied up being groomed because then he can strut about the yard unmolested.

He has caught well over 50 rats and mice and we have no more trouble in the feed shed.

Sarah

Sarah

Sarah McPherson is our Founder and Managing Director. She started Miniature Donkeys for Wellbeing Ltd after losing her mum to dementia and looking after her dad who has vascular dementia and Alzheimer’s disease. Her first donkey visit was to the nursing home where they were both living. She loves what she does and is passionate about keeping her donkeys healthy and happy, and using them to bring happiness to people who are in need of a boost.

Our volunteers
We couldn’t do anything without our dedicated band of volunteers. We have a team of 12, and growing every day, and these are a few of our volunteers.

Sandra

Sandra

Sandra joined us at the very beginning of our enterprise. She loves being with the donkeys and helping to deliver our wellbeing visits. She says this about being a volunteer for Miniature Donkeys for Wellbeing Ltd , “After my husband died it left a void in my life and volunteering with Sarah has really helped with that….volunteering with the donkeys is wonderful. I really feel like I belong to something really important.

Clair

Clair

Clair is a recent volunteer with us, but has soon got into the swing of things and is now a much valued member of the team. Clair says, “I’ve loved animals from a young age and always wanted to work with them, so when I saw that Minidonks needed volunteers I jumped at the chance. Working with the Minidonks team has helped me find a new focus in my life and makes me smile everyday. Seeing the residents relax with our miniature donkeys on visits is so rewarding and it makes me feel good knowing I am doing something positive to help others and that I’ve helped make their day brighter.

Steph

Steph

Steph joined the team in 2017 and was so inspired by Sarah’s passion for mini donks and the work they do, she now has two Donks of her own. Steph says, “‘When I first met Sarah and the Mini Donks last June, I thought what a extraordinary idea, and after losing my Grandad to mixed Alzheimer’s and Dementia, I immediately wanted to join as a volunteer. When we enter a room with the mini donks, the surprised looks and huge smiles on people’s faces makes it such a joy to do!’”

Lisa

Lisa

Not all our volunteers can regularly take part in visits, Lisa enjoys helping out behind the scenes & her previous experience working with young stock on Thoroughbred Stud Farms comes in handy when walking the young donkeys in the middle of winter when they can be a bit flighty. Lisa says “Spending time with the Minidonks, Sarah and the other volunteers is such a positive and enjoyable experience. The donkeys have such great characters they can’t help but make you smile and it’s always wonderful to see the looks on people’s faces when they get to meet them. The donkeys really do bring joy to wherever they go.

We are always looking for new volunteers to help with the donkeys, with visits, with admin and fundraising. If you think there is something that you could do to help us please give us a call.

Mini Donks on Facebook

And some more pictures of how the Minidonk team celebrate..... ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Congratulations so pleased for you. You deserve it.

So happy for you, only recently discovered the good work you all do and so pleased I voted for you and that you won, yeahhh xxxx

Yay well done Sarah and friends xxxx

Omg that’s amazing I Thought a music group won I must have missed ur announcement 🤦🏽‍♀️ so happy for u .. Congratulations 😍

Oh, well done you!!! ....and the donkeys of course! ! So pleased for you xxx 😊

Congratulations from Amberley Hall Care Home

I'm so pleased for you all 😁 Minidonks are definitely amazing therapy, for the staff as well as the residents at the homes you visit 💕 💕

Well done on winning and I did vote for you to win

I knew you’d do it 👏👏

Congratulations to you all 🇮🇹

Just the best news....!!! xx

Yay way to go Team Mini Donk - you so rock ❤️❤️❤️

Congratulations from all of us. Clive was never in doubt that you would win! Xxx

Amazing!!!!!! Congratulations!!!!!

Whoop whoop! Xx

Congrats from Sanford House . See you soon.

Congratulations, well deserved

Brilliant news. Xxxxxxxx

Waving from me sick bed

Amazing. 😊😊

Congratulations you all deserve the people vote, Thank you, everyone that voted.

Well deserved. 💖💖

❤️

Hoorrraaaayyyyyy - we did it, or rather, you did it for us. We are one of three very deserving winners. We have won £49,730. This will ensure we are around for many years to come, spreading more donkey love. Thank you all for voting, posting, liking and coming out to see us on our public visits. Here are our girls having some celebratory carrots and apples. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

congratulations:D great job your all doing

Fantastic news, congratulations x

Fantastic Sarah - well done!

Fantastic congratulations I voted for you you came to the care home were I work you do such a great job ❤️❤️

$49,750 - WOW!!! That is absolutely amazing, you are running a brilliant venture that gives people a fantastic feeling of well being, such a very much deserved award. Well done to you and your dedicated team

YAY I couldn’t be more happier for you all, so well deserved xx congratulations to you all and of course the donkeys xx

Congratulations on a fantastic win. Onwards & upwards keep up the good work. Very very pleased for you & all your volunteers. xx

Huge congratulations to you all. It brilliant news and I’m so glad things have worked out so well for you. Doesn’t seem five minutes since we were all sitting around the table in Jacqui’s workshop discussing our ideas! To see you going from strength to strength is simply fabulous xx

Well done mini donks and friends. Deserved. Brill. Keep spreading the love. Xx

That’s fantastic congratulations !

Yaaaaaaaayyyyyyyy!!!!!!!! Fantastic news - congratulations to you all xx

Fantastic news! Congratulations Sarah and the team of incredible volunteers, and of course the amazing minidonks. Keep up your inspirational work! xx

Fabulous! Well done sarah!!

That is amazing I am so pleased for you, we have loved seeing you at All Hallows xxx

So very well deserved well done mini donkeys I love you all 🥰👏🥳

So proud of all your efforts and proves you are a very special organisation and amazing people!!! Well done 😘 xxx

So happy for you all xxx

Love what you guys do!! Very well deserved, would love to meet the donkeys one day!! Congratulations xxx

SO pleased for you all....well deserved win and such a lot will now be done with that money xxx

Soooooo happy for you guys!!! Yo are amazing and you SO deserve this!!! 💕❤️😘💝!!!!

Yay fantastic news absolutely over the moon for you and the mini donks and thank you for all you are doing for them so very much deserved xxx congratulations 👏🏽👏🏽👏🏽

Fantastic news , congratulations so pleased for you 🤗

Congratulations well done

Fabulous congratulations well deserved see you again in May 🎊🎊🎉🎉🎉

Congratulations! Amazing news! So chuffed for you xx

Well my lovely friends - today is the day! Minidonk HQ will be packed with volunteers, we’ve got a live satellite feed to the stables (no we haven’t) and we are all waiting to find out how we did in The National Lottery People’s projects. If you are in the Anglia East TV region, watch the 6 o’clock news. If you are not, wait and listen carefully and you might hear the mighty roar of the Minidonk team (we hope) and if you miss either, we will post after 6.30 whatever the outcome. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Massive Well Done to all involved!! Never before have I drunk Prosecco from an Easter Egg, could be habit forming xx 😋 😀

Well done and congratulations 👍x

Great news! Congratulations 🌟🌟🌟👍🏼

Congratulations hx

Awesome news!!! 😁 🍾 🎊 🎉

Fantastic news that you won. jumped up and down with excitement when i saw the news. Well done.🥰🥰🥰

Fantastic news!! Well done. Xx

Good luck you deserve to win.

Brilliant! Well done and much deserved!. 🙂

Congratulations! So deserving!

Fantastic x so pleased 🙂

Good luck, got everything crossed for you x

Very well done so pleased for you all. thankyou for all your hard work you put in to bring enjoyment into peoples lives

Good luck! Fingers crossed 🤞

Good luck! With lots of love and finger crossing from everyone at BorderBus xx

Watching and waiting for the results on Anglia News.fingers crossed for your well deserving cause.🤞

Wish I could be there ☺️ Have a fantastic evening ❤️

OMG...I'm not in the Eastern region!!! I have a completely different set of projects!!! HELP.....xx

Well done all

well deserved ....congratulationsx

Well done. Just seen result

Here we go!!!

Oh, so, so happy. Tears even!

Congratulations!

Fingers crossed!!!!!

We love Park Britannia!! We had a brilliant morning there meeting lots of people, and being looked after like royalty!! There were rumours that Anglia TV were there filming for something!!? Remember to watch the ITV news at 6pm tomorrow. ... See MoreSee Less

We love Park Britannia!! We had a brilliant morning there meeting lots of people, and being looked after like royalty!! There were rumours that Anglia TV were there filming for something!!? Remember to watch the ITV news at 6pm tomorrow.Image attachment

Comment on Facebook

It's Thursday...I hope and pray it's the Mini Donks Day!! 🥰 xx

A day of rest for the Minidonk team today. We will be at Waterloo park in Norwich tomorrow from 10-1 for the Park Britannia holiday play event, and on Good Friday a visit to a nursing home to celebrate someone's 98th Birthday!!! Here are a few pictures from Wymondham Abbey from the lovely Ben at Ben Land Media . Thank you Ben - we love them. And don't forget to watch the Anglia ITV news at 6pm Thursday 18th April to find out how we did in The People's Project. The suspense is dreadful!!! ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Great photos Ben Land. X

Voting now closed. Thank you to everyone who voted for us. Winners will be announced on the Anglia ITV news at 6pm on Thursday 18th April...... we are keeping everything 🤞. But, more importantly, we have been up to our usual antics. Miss Millie was feeling full of the joys of spring and Bo Peep was her usual calm and lovely self. We helped a lovely lady celebrate a special birthday as well. ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Nothing to do now except wait...and pray xxx

Good luck xx

Fingers crossed!

🤞

We need your help. You have less than 5 hours to vote for us in The National Lottery People’s Projects. Voting closes at 12 noon today. Please please please vote if you have not already done so. Thank you to the huge numbers of you who have already voted. We will be visiting a care home in Kings Lynn this afternoon and doing more of this........

www.thepeoplesprojects.org.uk/projects/view/minidonks

#peoplesprojects
... See MoreSee Less

We need your help. You have less than 5 hours to vote for us in The National Lottery People’s Projects. Voting closes at 12 noon today. Please please please vote if you have not already done so. Thank you to the huge numbers of you who have already voted. We will be visiting a care home in Kings Lynn this afternoon and doing more of this........

https://www.thepeoplesprojects.org.uk/projects/view/minidonks

#peoplesprojects

Comment on Facebook

Have voted and asked everyone I know to vote. Am sharing as well. Good luck 🤞🤞❎❎

Signed and shared xx

Shared and signed hx

👍🏼😊

Done👍

Done it now 🙂 good luck 🙂

Done..👍🏻

Voted

It's a shame groups have to compete for "scarce resources", you should be fully state funded, for your wonderful work!

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Feedback from previous visits

It was all fantastic but the room visits were the best. Had me in tears the reactions we had.

Highlights were being able to have the donkeys up close even for residents nursed in bed, to be able to tell residents’ families about the visit and have photos to show them. Sarah and volunteers went out of their way to make it a special visit. More visits, more donkeys, we love you!

The residents enjoyed interacting with the donkeys and being able to touch them. They were interested to hear all about them and they loved them being in the lounge as most of the residents are not able to get outside.

The main highlight has to be with one resident who never leaves her bedroom. This lady suffers from dementia and the donkeys visited her in her bedroom. As soon as she saw them her face lit up. She absolutely loved them.

We were delighted with your visit, all ages and abilities loved the friendly donkeys.

It was the most special visit for our residents, staff and extended families. Thank you so much.

Your visit encouraged the residents outside into the sunshine. They enjoyed stroking and interacting with the donkeys as well as chatting to each other. So nice to see them enjoying themselves. Thank you.

The donkeys came to visit our tenants and Pippin went into the room of a very poorly lady. The look on her face was priceless. Thank you for bringing some joy and love to our setting.

You kindly took two little donkeys into my wife’s room, to say it made our day is very much an understatement, in fact my wife said ‘it is something I will never forget’.

My mum is one of the residents you refer to. I visited her this evening, words are a struggle but she was definitely trying to tell me about the donkeys! Thank you so much for visiting her.

You get smiles where nothing else can – thank you so much

Amazing reactions of residents, especially those with restricted communication. Thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Smiles all round, thank you.

You guys (most of all the donkeys) are awesome. Bringing joy and happiness to people who can’t get out easily. Keep up the good work

Thank you, they were amazing. The patients loved them.

Pixie and Bo Peep were the best behaved donkeys ever, our residents thoroughly enjoyed their visit… I cannot recommend Sarah, her donkeys and fabulous volunteers enough.

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