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Look for the Helpers: Abused animals get care, seniors show appreciation for medical professionals

As our area is faced with ongoing changes due to a growing pandemic, we are bringing stories of people doing good in the community during a time of uncertainty.

Look for the helpers.

Mister Rogers

Animals Get Second Chance

An animal sanctuary in Santa Ynez is still caring for dozens of abused and abandoned animals amid the COVID-19 crisis.

Many of the volunteers are unable to help because of the pandemic, but caregivers at Greener Pastures Farm Sanctuary remain on site working with miniature horses, donkeys, goats pigs, chickens, ducks, bunnies and cats.

The nonprofit relies on educational tours to make money. But, since it's closed to the public, the sanctuary is offering a series of Facebook live-streams featuring different animals every week.

The sanctuary rescues, rehabilitates and allows dozens of animals saved from neglect, kill pens, slaughter houses and factory farms to live out the rest of their lives on the 5-acre property with healthy food and exercise.

If you are interested in donating, click here.

Visit Greener Pastures Farm Sanctuary on Facebook to see their virtual tours.

Seniors Say Thanks

Seniors living at Palm Tree Apartments in Santa Barbara are honoring medical professionals who are caring for coronavirus patients.

Every night, they all step outside into the courtyard and clap their hands.

The seniors were inspired by video of Italians celebrating first responders on their balconies.

Apartment manager Gene Marasco often comes outside and sings opera for the residents in honor of medical professionals.

Teen Lends a Hand

When she's not doing school work, a teen is sewing masks at home.

Malia Ortiz is a 7th grader at Solvang School who says she starting sewing masks to keep her family and friends healthy after a close family member contracted the Coronavirus.

Ortiz sewed a "Thor" mask for a 9-year-old boy who was nervous about going to the hospital.

Ortiz also made made masks for her mom, who is a nurse, and her co-workers at Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital, and her dad and his co-workers.

Keeping Routines

Local kids and teachers are demonstrating their resilience and keeping routines as they learn and teach from home.

The Firestone family of Santa Barbara starts each school day with the Pledge of Allegiance via Zoom.

Their mom says seeing them stand and salute the flag makes her feel proud and emotional as they continue their studies from home.

Know of any other helpers making a difference during these trying times? Send Alys an email and let her know!

Author Profile Photo

Alys Martinez

Alys Martinez is a reporter and anchor at News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Alys, click here.

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