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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.

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

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Happy Monday! We’ve been giving the boys buckets of hay and straw in the mornings, to fill their little tummies, before they go out on the grass in the afternoons! Almost every day, Alf decides it’s much better to throw the bucket around and then eat the contents. He’s such a pickle! ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Good morning to you all 😊❤️

Ah they are adorable bless them and good morning all xxx xxx 💝💝💝

It's fun

Is it possible to visit the donkeys ?

The best bit is always at the bottom so my horse tells me!

Rubik is our boy - much better table manners, so well brought up! 😜

Likes to do it his way

Happy Monday, weather lovely again today, have a great day x ❤🐾🥰

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Good morning Minidonkers! We hope you are having a great day. We did some more walking with our wonderful volunteers and as it was a showery day we tested out some Minidonk raincoats. May the showers stay away from you and the sunshine shine! ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Morning all, Love the mini donkeys coats fabulous xx 💖🐾❤💞

Happy Saturday to you all x lovely to see the donks enjoying their walks xxx 💖💖

Beautiful pictures and I love the coats hope you all have a great day bless you all xxx xxx 💝💝💝💝

So cute!🥰

Love this ☺️

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The boys are raring to go! They can’t wait for it to be Monday when they have the volunteers come back to their yard, for the first time, to do some grooming and walking! So looking forward to being able to share with you more pictures like these ❤️ ... See MoreSee Less

The boys are raring to go! They can’t wait for it to be Monday when they have the volunteers come back to their yard, for the first time, to do some grooming and walking! So looking forward to being able to share with you more pictures like these ❤️Image attachmentImage attachment

Comment on Facebook

Happy Friday everyone and especially the donkeys xx ❤🐾

Looking forward to meeting the boys soon.

Very special post today. Yesterday we took Pippin and Pixie to see Greg, a very special friend, who we first met back in 2017. Greg lives with an acquired brain injury and was taking part in an intensive assessment process. We were asked to take the donks along as part of the process and we were delighted to be able to agree, with an outdoor visit and face masks. I cannot tell you how emotional it was for us to be out with the donks again. We are now in a position to be able to open up, gradually, with outdoor visits, for no more than 6 people, until the Covid rules allow for larger groups. If you have made contact with us about visits, we will be contacting you over the coming weeks. Please do bear with us, we are a small team, but will get back to you as soon as we can. If you want to know more, email us, info@minidonks.org.uk
Huge thanks to Greg and his family, and to Hollie and Tim for making our first visit such a happy one...... and of course Pippin and Pixie, our Minidonk superstars.
... See MoreSee Less

Very special post today. Yesterday we took Pippin and Pixie to see Greg, a very special friend, who we first met back in 2017. Greg lives with an acquired brain injury and was taking part in an intensive assessment process. We were asked to take the donks along as part of the process and we were delighted to be able to agree, with an outdoor visit and face masks. I cannot tell you how emotional it was for us to be out with the donks again. We are now in a position to be able to open up, gradually, with outdoor visits, for no more than 6 people, until the Covid rules allow for larger groups. If you have made contact with us about visits, we will be contacting you over the coming weeks. Please do bear with us, we are a small team, but will get back to you as soon as we can. If you want to know more, email us, info@minidonks.org.uk
Huge thanks to Greg and his family, and to Hollie and Tim for making our first visit such a happy one...... and of course Pippin and Pixie, our Minidonk superstars.Image attachment

Comment on Facebook

Such great news that you are back on the road again. So pleased for you all 😊xx

What special people you are 💕

Aww bless that's lovely, have a lovely day x ❤🐾

That is so lovely to see and glad you all enjoyed your time out x bless you all xxx 💘💘💘

How lovely for you to be able to get out again. 💕

Thank you

So pleased for Miniature Donkeys for Wellbeing and those fortunate to get a visit. Phew! 👏🥰🙌

Lovely to see the Donks doing what they do best, sharing the love and enjoying it too.

Amazing! 😍 We will definitely be making an enquiry for All Hallows 💗

Bless these Donkeys and their guardians 💕 The gentle nature of Donkeys make them excellent Therapets. Shared on my For the Love of Donkeys page.

Awesome.

That's lovely

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It is wonderful Wednesday today! We have had some amazing support from a brilliant company, Wordwall. They are sponsoring us by funding a crew cab pickup truck. This will allow us to deliver more visits, take the Minidonk shop out and about, tow our muck trailer and carry up to 5 people to visits. It will mean that we really will be able to maximise our impact as soon as we can get going again. We really cannot thank them enough, and one of the company directors had this to say,
“When I spoke to you the real purpose of your organisation really came across and it was that conversation that motivated me to ensure you got the full amount. I wish you the best of luck and I imagine your clients have been having a tough year, so will be very much appreciating these visits.”
So now we need your help! Do you know any car dealers who would be willing to help us find the next donkmobile? We are looking for a crew cab pickup, seating 5 adults, as new as possible, as low mileage as possible, decent engine size for pulling power, with a tow bar and solid top on the back. Happy to discuss our budget with anyone who wants to do us a fantastic deal! And if they need any persuading- these photos are a reminder of why we do what we do.
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Comment on Facebook

Fantastic pictures looks like everyone had a great time bless you all xxx xxx 💝💝💝💝

Lovely pictures xx ❤🐾

Booyah! Yeeha. What a great company. 🥰

That wonderful news, some lovely kind people about , thank you Wordwall ❤️xxx

Wonderful news Sarah. So pleased for you all 😍😄xx

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Terrific Tuesday! Donks were set loose in the garden yesterday to eat up some long lush grass. They were only out for 30 minutes, as too much, too soon can lead to stomach upsets and even laminitis. But it is so satisfying to see six happy little donkeys munching away. I took 30 minutes for myself and sat with them with a coffee and a book. The grass was obviously very good but Jack, Millie and Pippin all took time out from eating to just come and stand next to me for cuddles. Take care everyone, and have your own quiet moment today, doing something just for you. Xxx ... See MoreSee Less

Comment on Facebook

Aww bless, have a lovely day x ❤🥰🐾

Bless them they are adorable xxx 💘💘💘

How wonderful to see them xx

How lovely. X

How lovely... hopefully aiming to do that with 3 sunbathing dogs this afternoon! Although they'll be no therapeutic munching noises! x

Good to see them enjoying the sunshine and grass 😊

Lovely to see them enjoying the grass and you getting to chill with them x

How wonderful ❤

who needs a lawnmower eh

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Feedback from previous visits

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

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 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.

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’.

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

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

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.

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

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.

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

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.

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.

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.

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

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

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