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The Barrett cows need hay now!

TOTAL DONATIONS RAISED

$11,992 – Total Donations, including MATCHING DONATIONS BELOW

MATCHING DONORS BELOW

$500 MATCH from Dani Alexander

$1000 MATCH from Tommy and Renee Sonnen

$1000 MATCH from Mick Davoudian 

$500 MATCH from Shushana Castle

$1500 MATCH from Jane Velez-Mitchell 

The Barrett Cows HAY FUNDRAISER WAS A HUGE SUCCESS THANKS TO ALL OF YOU! 

12-21-18 – THE BARRETTS HAD 4 TRUCKS DELIVERED FOR A TOTAL OF 120 ROUND BALES – ROWDY GIRL SANCTUARY PAID $9,544 TO HAY VENDOR on 12/21/18 & $38.50 for FED EX delivery to Hay Vendor – the Barretts have elected to spend the remaining balance of $1,841.50 on Diesel that they desperately need in order to get the hay to the cows. RGS has paid a total of $720.10 for diesel. RGS has $1,160 balance  remaining for diesel. This gives us a total of 30 DAYS of Hay for the Barrett Cows – This is the final update for the Barrett Cows Hay Fundraiser GO JENNI & RODNEY! Your new life in Wickes, Arkansas is a beacon of hope!!

The Barretts are a third generation farmer in Wickes, Arkansas. At one time they farmed 100,000 chickens every 52 days, and had a cow/calf operation. Today, they are vegan—have ceased chicken production, and are determined to care for the cows and their babies that they previously sent to the sale barn. They will be out of hay on or near December 15th.

Our Goal is to raise $5,000 and then another $5,000 MATCH WILL KICK IN giving them a total $10,000 for HAY – DEADLINE is midnight December 15th so that they can get enough hay while they are making immediate plans to begin their dream of a mushroom and hemp farm. 

The Ranchers Advocacy Program is in Wickes, Arkansas, assessing the needs of the Barretts so that we can help them become profitable again, and provide emotional support. Right now they are in serious trouble and need help to feed the cows that are dependent upon them for survival. They need hay now for their 205 cows. They are not making any money whatsoever, as they anticipate with full faith that they will be converting their four former, 43′ x 500′ poultry barns (21,500 sq ft each) into a mushroom and hemp farm.

I learned about this amazing couple when Shaun Monson, director of Earthlings, Unity and co producer of Dominion introduced us a few weeks back when the Barretts were needing to speak to someone who could relate to them, and understand their feelings.

  • 127% of $5,000 Goal has been met – Thank you for your generosity! 127% 127%


 

A Message from the Barretts

We reached out to Renee when we became desperate for help with our cattle. We are third generation cattle and chicken farmers and recently became aware that what we were doing was wrong so, we have since stopped production in the chicken houses and ceased the breeding/selling of our cattle. Since then, we’ve had no income and have exhausted what savings we had. The cattle are still on the property and we are quickly running out of hay to sustain them through the winter. Renee seemed to be the perfect person to reach out to since she has been a cattle rancher’s wife. And, she gets it. I’m absolutely certain that, with her help, we will be able to find the right solutions for not only the cattle but for the future of our farm and community. Thank you for any help you can provide.
 
Rodney and Jennifer Barrett

The Barrett Family Story

My name is Jennifer Barrett. I live on a farm in Southwest Arkansas where my husband, Rodney, and I have raised cattle and chickens for 18 years. My family and I moved to this farm when I was in high school (1987). I got married in ’91 and moved away for 8 years and then my husband and I moved back to the farm and took over the operation in late 1999.

We are drawn to be here on this land. It is our home and we have been poor stewards.

In 2011, Rodney was diagnosed with Ulcerative colitis which launched this journey to find health. I was suffering from arthritis, depression, obesity, hypertension and was headed nowhere good. Over the course of years and our search for health, we started to eliminate things from our diet and learned as we went. I started to lose weight and feel better. Rodney’s UC symptoms were in remission most of the time. I started working out and learning more about nutrition and how it affects our health. I started to dig and question everything as my body responded to treating it better. I was voracious for information and for sharing my journey. It was so exciting.

Then, in May of 2016, we did a 3-week plant-based program. We only had a small amount of animal protein in the first week and then the second two weeks were fully vegan. When that program was complete, I felt like a whole new person. My mind was so sharp and clear. I was sleeping like a baby. I had so much vitality and energy and JOY. We both did. It was revolutionary…but, it raised a million questions.

I’ve heard that the soul is covered by a thousand veils and this revelation tore down many of them. I slowly started to realize that what we were doing was wrong. I remember standing in one of our chicken houses the day before they went to slaughter and feeling so heavy with grief that they were all going to die…and for what? My job up until then had been one of those badges of honor, a “dirty” job, a good old American way to make a living. And it was hard!! So hard on us in every way. But we did it with pride because we were providing a product and we were serving the greater good and it was, at the very least, allowing us to live on our beloved farm.

I thought for a while that I could live with the hypocrisy of it. I thought I could be a vegan that just so happened to raise chickens for a living. But it got dark for me. Last December, I was at the bottom. It was so horrible to know that all of this suffering and death and decay, this holocaust situation, was so unnecessary. I started to see the chickens differently. I’d never really looked at them as individuals before but, my heart started to break when I would see their terror and their suffering. They were no longer a product. They were birds!! They hatched from an egg…that miraculous thing that happens when a baby bird hatches from an egg…and we’ve mass produced it, and put them on an assembly line, and sentenced them to a life of misery, then slit their throats and for what? To clog our arteries and destroy our health? To spend a few minutes mindlessly munching on their flesh? It became more than I could bear. So, one day, I wrote a letter to the universe. And the universe responded. 

We have stopped raising chickens in the hopes that we will soon be growing mushrooms in the chicken houses. We have also stopped the breeding and selling of our cattle. Which is why I need help. We had really pushed our grazing acreage to the limits in hopes to make a profit while we had an abundance of hay. This backfired as the market dropped and the hay ended up not being that great. So we are now feeding 205 head of cattle on about 120 acres of grazeable land. We only have enough hay to get us through until the 15th of December.

I can’t sell. I won’t sell. The pain and darkness I’ve been through with the realization that we are needlessly killing these animals has been profound and I will not shirk in my responsibility to make sure they are safe now. We are the reason they are here in the first place. And, when the history books are written, I want to be on the right side. And, this is the right thing to do.

Having said all that, we need help. We need to either buy some surrounding property, find another farm for some of them to go to, or buy lots of hay. We have secured a lease on some grazing property that would buy us a few more weeks but, it needs fencing work done to hold them and we don’t have the money to do that either. Since we stopped raising chickens and selling cattle, we don’t have any income and we have exhausted all of our savings. The build out for the mushrooms should begin soon, but it will still take time to put into operation and see any cash flow. It is just this interim that is going to be the hurdle we will definitely need help with.

I hope this explains our situation enough to help get something rolling. I’m so happy to be awake but I’m scared as well. I feel that surrounding myself with as many other people who get it and see it and know the truth is the best thing I can do. Even if nothing can be done financially, we need support in every sense of the word. 

Thank you for any and all assistance.

Peace and joy,

Jennifer

     

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