With the announcement that the government grant incentives for businesses across England and Wales have been extended, we caught up with one of our fantastic Welsh employers, Jan Garen, owner of Wales Ape & Monkey Sanctuary, who explains how the government grants have benefitted their business.
“I used to be Head of Earth Sciences in a London School, but my husband and I started the sanctuary in 1998 when a local zoo had to close. They had lots of different animals and there was nobody in the UK who would take on seven adult chimpanzees’.
We stepped in and offered the chimps a home and from that day, we have made it our mission to rescue any animal in need and give it a home where possible. We now have more than two-hundred animals in our care, including baboons from Kuwait, a stow-away raccoon, meerkats, macaque monkeys rescued from laboratories, thirty horses and wolfdogs from the pet trade, all of which have become our extended family.
We don’t receive any government funding to help support the sanctuary’s running costs per month, including food, heating, water and vet bills for the rescued animals, so we solely rely on generous donations and the public visiting.
We choose to employ apprentices so that we gain enthusiastic employees to continue our work in the future, and who will have the same ethos and commitment to the animals as we do. Our apprentices benefit from real hands-on experience and learn how to properly care for rescued animals, which often colleges and universities don’t cover.
As we are a charity, the Welsh government grant incentive has been vital in helping to support our apprentices. Good training takes time and without the government grant incentive we wouldn’t be able to afford to take on apprentices.
Haddon Training are the only provider that offered us such flexible visits and the specific courses that our Keepers require to care for exotic animals in a sanctuary. Haddon Training also provide superb contact with us as an employer.
We love what we do and will continue to keep rescuing animals in need. The beneficiaries of our charity are our animals, and we want to continue to give them the best life possible. We welcome you to come and visit the sanctuary to see the work we do.”
A special thanks to Jan for the use of these images
For more information on our apprenticeships please contact our friendly team.