After almost 20 years at Santa Lucia, it became high time for the Aruba Donkey Sanctuary to move to a new, and larger area to house its 130 donkeys. The move is scheduled to take place on April 2 and 3; these two days the sanctuary will be closed, but on April 4 the new Donkey Sanctuary's doors at Bringamosa will open wide. The new opening hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., every day of the week.
The move was unavoidable, as the herd had become so large that it had to be housed at three different locations. At Bringamosa all the donkeys will be together, plus there will be lots of new facilities: six stables for sick or pregnant donkeys, who may be nursed and taken care of in a safe environment. The stables are baby-proof, so that newborn donkeys can take their first steps there. There is also a donkey aid station for veterinary treatments and dentistry; they can be washed there too, if necessary. A donkey KIA (prison) will incarcerate the animals that are not 100% to be trusted; these are often donkeys with traumas following abuse or an accident. There is also a spacious location for donkey feed, running water and electricity; especially water is a first necessity for the donkeys.
For guests there is a cozy visitors' center where one can have a cold drink on the covered porch, buy a souvenir in the shop and make a stop at the bathro oms. All this makes a visit to the Aruban Donkey Sanctuary worth your while. Not everything is 100% finished, but there is more than enough ready to adequately welcome visitors. Depending on our finances, the rest will be completed `poco poco'; the cost alone of fencing in a 120.000 square-meter area with donkey-proof fencing is enormous. It is, however, necessary, as roaming donkeys are a hazard in nowaday traffic.
The new Donkey Sanctuary is going to make a start on a terrain that is rented cheaply from the government. It is currently 22.000 square meters, but the remaining documents have been signed and then the donkeys will have 120.000 square meters to play in: eight times bigger than our current location at Sta. Lucia, where we housed our donkeys at no cost during the past 20 years courtesy of the Paris family.
It would be very nice if you came by to meet the donkeys in their new habitat; it could be an educational way of spending your free time. Enjoy sipping your drink or eating an ice cream at Bringamosa. Take the road at your left to Frenchman's Pass when coming from Santa Curz and take a left again as soon as you can. From there you will find signs how to find our new Donkey Sanctuary. You are more than welcome from 9 am until 4 pm. Please come and visit us at the Donkey Sanctuary.