Bernard Matthews, has teamed up with Miniature Donkeys for Wellbeing, a small social enterprise that brings the animals to care and nursing homes in and around East Anglia.
This inspiring, not for profit initiative was hatched in May 2017 and it has already helped change the lives of hundreds of people that are unable to get out and about by taking their gentle and friendly miniature donkeys: Pixie, Pippin, Saffron and Bo-peep, to meet dementia groups or people that find social situations challenging.
Andrew Sherwood, human resources director at Bernard Matthews, said: “We wanted to support a worthwhile project in the heart of our community that would make a real difference to people’s lives and help keep mini donks on the road.”
“As people are living longer, we are all experiencing first-hand family or friends with dementia so we could really connect with what mini donks was seeking to achieve.”
Sarah McPherson, the group’s founder and previously a family carer for two parents with dementia, said: “I would like to say a very big thank you for the generous donation that the Bernard Matthews Fund has offered us. This will make such a big difference to our operation and allow us to bring more smiles to people’s faces and improve people’s mental health and wellbeing.”
“To witness the pleasure that our donkeys give to someone who cannot leave their bed or room is unbelievable. We regularly see tears of happiness and we get people who have not smiled for so long, break out in a beaming smile.”
“It’s not just what happens on the day. The excitement building up before a visit and the happy memories it generates for family and friends is so special.”