Just before Christmas 2017, The Donkey Sanctuary highlighted the plight of three abandoned mares named Faith, Hope and Charity to the general public. The plight of the donkeys received widespread coverage in the Belfast Telegraph newspaper and UTV (Ulster Television). The publicity attracted a lot of support and interest from the general public both keen to support our work and expressing an interest in our rehoming scheme. Offers of homes for Faith, Hope and Charity steadily came in however donkey welfare adviser Jane Bruce remained keen to try and find a home for all three donkeys as a ’unit’ as they were clearly friends of which there was a mother and daughter bond within the group.
Having assessed some of the potential homes one in particular caught Jane's attention as they were a family synonymous with the equine showing world and showing circuit. Jane visited the home and was met by warmth and enthusiasm from Wanda who explained to her that their showing yard had over the years gradually cut back on horses with only ‘Lord of the Dance’ (known as Dancer) remaining. Jane knew Dancer immediately by reputation alone, a formidable 17.2 hands high show hunter who had graced the rings of the RDS and the RUAS standing repeatedly as Supreme Champion season after season. Now in his retirement years, Wanda believed that Dancer would benefit from some company of the long eared variety!
Wanda had clearly been following the three donkeys story as it had unfolded and had a cut out from the newspaper on her table. She asked Jane about the donkeys, their characters and how they had come into our care. It was agreed that Wanda would take the mother and daughter unit (Hope and Charity). Realistically, Jane knew that it was going to be difficult to find a home that would take all three animals so she went for the best outcome that she thought was achievable.
Hope and Charity fitted in fabulously well in their new home with ‘Dancer’ and Jane kept in regular contact with Wanda to make sure all was going well. Such was Wanda’s enthusiasm for the two donkeys that Jane was on the brink of asking her would she consider taking ‘Faith’ as well , however she needed to be mindful of what was manageable. Thankfully Jane didn’t have to broach the question as she received a text shortly after the arrival of Hope and Charity asking how Faith was getting on and the family would be delighted to have her come and live her life out with her two friends and Dancer.
And so the ‘trinity’ was reunited in their forever home safeguarding both their future and friendship.