The following opinion editorial appeared in our local Asheville newspaper, the Citizen Times, in June 2019. You can also read the full copy on the Citizen Times’ website at this link. We’re grateful to long-time Brother Wolf supporter, Lisa Fox, for sharing her message with our community.
As Brother Wolf faces transition, they need Asheville’s support more than ever
“You’ve likely heard that Brother Wolf Animal Rescue’s passion for saving animals led them to expand their work beyond their means, taking on too much too quickly. While well intentioned, their ventures into farmed animal care and their sanctuary project in Leicester veered from their core mission of rescuing companion animals, alienated supporters, and strained their limited resources. As a result, they’re facing a one million dollar deficit this year and need the community’s help to regain stability.
Many of us have developed strong opinions about Brother Wolf over the past few years, whether positive or negative. No matter which side you stand on, I’d like to urge you today to take action for the animals in our community who need us right now. There’s no debating the incredible impact Brother Wolf has made over the course of its lifetime. Brother Wolf paved the way for the No-Kill community we celebrate today by insisting that we should, and could, do better for the animals. Along with other animal lovers and rescue organizations, they built the resources and programs to make it happen.
Like thousands of other families in the Asheville area, my own has been touched by Brother Wolf’s tireless work for the animals. Last year, when an animal rescue organization in Lake Toxaway was forced to close its doors, Brother Wolf stepped up to make sure their animals were safe. They welcomed over 100 dogs and cats into their Adoption Center and foster homes, most of whom were seniors with special medical needs. One was a 15-year old, one-eyed dog named Venus, who we fell in love with the moment we met her.
Despite being overlooked by potential adopters for the past six years and losing an eye to a chronic condition, Venus hadn’t lost her amazing spirit and love of life. She settled into our home and family quickly, even becoming best friends with our other senior dog, Buster. We can’t imagine our lives without her, and we have Brother Wolf to thank. We’re so grateful to have the time and chance to shower her with comfort in her golden years, and to help her know what it means to have a family who will love her no matter what.
Venus is a very special dog to us, and she’s just one of thousands of animals Brother Wolf will care for and adopt into loving families this year. The hard truth is that we’d likely no longer have a No-Kill community here in Buncombe County without Brother Wolf. The other rescue organizations in our town are fantastic, however none have the capacity to take on the extra 10,000 animals Brother Wolf will help this year. This is why each and every one of us has a opportunity to help them through this hard time. The animals are counting on us.
On their end, Brother Wolf is working hard to rebuild their foundation, and I believe their new Executive Director, Leah Craig Fieser, will lead them to success. She has only been with the organization since February, but has already done a massive amount of work to repair relationships within the community, streamline policies and procedures, build a skilled and active Board of Directors, ensure all resources are being used in the most effective way, and make hard and necessary decisions that support and strengthen Brother Wolf’s core mission.
They’re getting back on track, but need our support now more than ever. I hope you’ll join me in standing beside the animals during this challenging time and offer Brother Wolf support in whatever way you are able. Through July 9th, donations to Brother Wolf will be matched up to $40,000. Every dollar you can give makes a big difference for the animals who need and count on Brother Wolf. We can all work together to save their lives.”
P.S We’re grateful to long-time Brother Wolf supporter, Lisa Fox, for sharing her message with our community. If you would like to donate to our $40,000 matching challenge, you can do so here.