The Sanctuary is Growing!
On Saturday, October 7, 2017, donors from across the state gathered to celebrate Our Companions Animal Rescue’s 15th anniversary and the near completion of “Phase-Three” of construction at the animal Sanctuary in Ashford, CT. This expansion will allow Our Companions to build three new cottages, thus doubling the number of animals that can be rescued and rehabilitated at the Sanctuary.
Joining the three current cottages, we now have Jane’s Place, named in honor of the Jane A. and John T. Weiderhold Foundation. This cottage contains nearly 2,000 square feet of housing to ensure the comfort, enrichment and rehabilitation of cats.
We also have Canine Cottage, Chris’s Place is named in honor of longtime board member Chris Shivery, and to honor the generous contributions of Christine Knuth, the fourth canine cottage has been named the Love Shack.
To honor Lida Orzeck for her generous contributions to all three phase of construction at the Sanctuary, the entire dog campus has been named the Pepsee Canine Campus.
Our Companions would like to thank all the donors who gave to the capital campaign that raised over one million dollars for this phase of construction. The new buildings will be completed and operational in January, 2018.
Click here to see photos from the event.
To learn more about how you can help secure a $150,000 gift to support the operations of these new cottages, click here.
Come for a Visit
Wouldn’t you love to visit a place where homeless dogs and cats live with the love, security, and comfort of a real home? Well, you can! The Our Companions Animal Rescue Sanctuary, in Ashford, Connecticut, is open to the public every Saturday afternoon from 1:00pm to 3:00pm.
Stop by, and one of our friendly staff members or volunteers will guide you through the living space we’ve set up for these animals in need. In Sebastian House, you can get to see cats climbing and playing, or just curled up in a chair in the sunlight. You can even get to say hello and give a little petting or playtime to many of them. Then you can head over to Henree House, to see our doggie dormitories, where our dogs get to rest up after a big day of hiking and playing with our volunteers. There will even be one or two of our greeter dogs around for some snuggling and maybe even some face licks.
This summer and fall, you can also witness the work going into our expansion, as the construction and preparation of three new buildings finishes up, allowing us to help even more dogs and cats in need. So, come see the exciting work that we’re doing here in Ashford. Our staff, our volunteers, and most importantly, our dogs and cats, would love to meet you.
Super Cool Drone Footage of Sanctuary Construction
Lucy supervises dog cottage construction
Last year Our Companions Animal Rescue successfully completed a one million dollar capital campaign allowing us to begin Phase 3 of construction that will double the housing for animals at our Sanctuary.
The Sanctuary helps our community’s most vulnerable animals by providing them a home-like setting that is conducive to a longer-term stay: a low-stress, enriching atmosphere that encourages healing and rehabilitation.
Recently OC volunteer and photographer Ian Green took his drone up for a fly to capture some pretty cool aerial images of the new construction progress, Video courtesy of Ian Green Photography.
Also, don’t forget you can see the progress in person! Each week the Sanctuary is open to visitors for tours on Saturdays from 1-3PM. Here’s more information on visiting. We will keep you updated on our opening this fall.
Hope to see you soon!
The new cat cottage, outside and in
Click the image above for an enlarged view
Our Companions was founded in 2002 after receiving a gift of 43 acres of land in Ashford, Connecticut. Ironically, this property, formerly a factory farm for laying hens, has been transformed into a Sanctuary that offers a unique and much-needed resource for homeless cats and dogs.
The animals at our Sanctuary, most of whom are older, traumatized, abused, or neglected, are the types of animals that would likely be euthanized in a traditional shelter. Our Sanctuary helps these animals by providing them a home-like setting that is conducive to a longer-term stay: a low-stress, enriching atmosphere that encourages healing and rehabilitation. The Sanctuary also serves as an adoption center, providing an inviting place for people to meet our animals and find the perfect addition to their family.
The complete, multi-phase Sanctuary construction plan entails 17 cottages for cats and dogs, an education center, a dog park, walking trails and nature preserve. Thanks to generous support within the community, we successfully demolished the defunct factory farm and completed Phase 1 of construction. Subsequently, we completed Phase 2 in 2013.
The chart below illustrates our progress thus far, as well as future construction phases. Thank you so very much for your past and continued support.
|Demolition||Demolish defunct factory farm||$300,000||Completed Fall 2008||Completed Winter 2009|
|1||First rescue cottage, welcome center, garage, site work & vehicle purchase||$1,000,000||Completed Spring 2011||Completed Fall 2012|
|2||2 more rescue cottages, Remembrance Wall and Reflection Gardens||$630,000||Completed Spring 2013||Completed Fall 2013|
|3||4 more cottages
(two feline and two canine)
|$1,000,000||Raised $1,000,000||Begin construction 2017|
|4||10 more cottages and education center||$3,5000,000||TBD||TBD|
Click the image above for an enlarged view