Elisabeth Svendsen Trust and Donkey Sanctuary merge

Sidmouth causes become one

SIDMOUTH based cause the Elisabeth Svendsen Trust has been merged into The Donkey Sanctuary, it was announced on Monday.

Charity bosses say the change will help “rationalise” administration costs and strengthen an already “excellent” working relationship.

They say the move would have been “a dream come true” for both charities’ late founder – Dr Elizabeth Svendsen MBE.

The merger means The Donkey Sanctuary’s activities will now include donkey-assisted therapy for children with additional needs, and therapeutic visits for elderly people in the local community.

David Cook, chief executive of The Donkey Sanctuary, said: “Both charities have their origins from the 1970’s as a direct result of the hard work and initiative of Dr Svendsen.

“They have since worked side-by-side, linked closely through the donkeys, as well as many shared administrative tasks and fundraising activities.

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“After a period of consultation between trustees and directors of both charities, the merger was seen as a positive move to strengthen our excellent working relationship and help rationalise on administrative costs.

“The reality is that The Donkey Sanctuary and The Elisabeth Svendsen Trust for Children and Donkeys have always worked closely and the donkeys have always benefited from working with the children and adults as much as the children and adults have benefited from their association with the donkeys.

“It is only a shame that Dr Svendsen, having wished for her two charities to merge for so many years, is not here today to see her dream come true.”

He added the merger itself will not change the way that the charities perform their important work, but “will produce overall savings by removing duplication of work in the administration and general operating activities” of each charity.