CJ ACRES is not just a sanctuary for the animals, whose many lives are saved there.It is also a haven for the people who give tirelessly of their time, their passion and their love to care for them.One might not generally think of a barn and its environs as a magical place but that is most certainly how I see CJ ACRES. Very recently, I found myself in an incredibly difficult and emotionally-charged situation in regards to my 16-year old cat Patch. Without going into the details of the for-me-very-sad story, suffice it to say that I reached out to Lee Sacket, the "lead mare" at CJ and after a series of important and appropriate questions, he took her in without hesitation. Had it not been for Lee and the sanctuary, Patch would not have made her way further into an ideal setting and home to live out the remainder of her years. I will always miss her, but I know in my heart that I did the "right" thing by taking her to CJ ACRES.I do not know the number, but I venture to say that there are VERY few farm animal sanctuaries in existence. For me, this is some of the most important work that is being done on the planet. It speaks not only to the rescues who live at CJ, but to a greater global consciousness and awareness. I highly recommend that anyone who finds him- or herself in the area (or nearby) inquire about receiving a guided tour of the farm. I even MORE highly recommend that everyone consider becoming a donor. It is very easy to create a recurring donation directly from your bank account. One can choose to be an active participant for as little as $12 per month by becoming a member of the Compassion Club.I could go on and on as I cannot say enough good, glowing and glorious things about CJ ACRES, but for now, I'll leave it right here. PLEASE DONATE and MAKE A DIFFERENCE!
I have been a volunteer with the farm since January 2014 and have loved every minute of it. The animal residents are so very taken care of by Lee Sackett, caregivers and the steady volunteers. I am there twice a week, sometimes more, and consider the sanctuary my happy place :). These animals came from neglect, abuse and/or abandonment and now live a care free life filled with lots of love and open space to roam happily with lots of friends!!!
I started volunteering here on March 15, 2014. I was so taken with the farm, the animals and the other people who volunteer I haven't been able to keep track of the number of times I've been back since then. I only wished I lived closer (57 miles one way) so that I could be there more. It is the most peaceful place that I can be....the animals are happy, they smile and they are loved! It is so rewarding also, to be around other like minded people who really love and care about the well being of animals---and not just the ones on the farm. I can't say enough good things about CJ Acres...
I have been volunteering on the farm since January. It has quickly become my happy place. I have built bonds with some of the animals as well as volunteers and these bonds are impacting me in such a positive way. Lead Mare Lee Sackett is a compassionate animal advocate and amazing leader and educator. Because of Lee and the animals of CJ Acres, I have been inspired to become more active in doing something that really matters. Definitely a place worth getting involved with!!!
CJ Acres is an amazing organization. I've been volunteering for over a year and everything is always very organized and animals have everything they need and more. I love this place!
I love CJ Acres! It's my favorite place and I met some great people while volunteering there. Animals are well cared for by Lee and the herd of volunteers. I'm glad there is a place like this. Farm animals need our help!
CJ Acres is by far one of my most favorite places to be! It is a very peaceful place. The animals there have been through worse situations than most people can imagine but are still so loving. It shows that with kindness and care any animal can be given a second chance at a beautiful life. That is what CJ acres is to these animals. I am so glad that a place like this exists here in Florida. I have been volunteering there for 2 years and I have never had a bad experience. Lee and the volunteers are all very caring and wonderful people that I enjoy volunteering with!
Hands down this is the place to be! You can learn a lot about the true nature of life by being in the presence of pure love, forgiveness, compassion and beauty. The animals, caretakers and Lee (lead mare) are beacons of change igniting the words of Gandhi, "be the change you want to see ." It is a place I will continue to draw to for peace for many years to come!
Dr. Jon Repole
Jacksonville Health and Wellness Center
We and the rescued animals are beyond fortunate to have CJ Acres here in Northeast Florida. Lee Sackett's tireless energy and dedication benefit not only the lucky animals who call CJ Acres home, but also the community. Here's how: In addtition to their fundamental rescue mission, CJ Acres educates and reaches out the community, With Lee's expertise and sensitivity, the animal ambassadors provide information and are living testimonials to help people make the personal connection between farm animal exploitation and their plates. The CJ Acres team does a great job participating in outreach events that help bring CJ Acres to the public, as well as organize ongoing events that bring people to CJ Acres -- all the while prioritizing care of the animals.
This place is beyond amazing and if it were closer, I'd be there every weekend. Lee and his staff have given these animals a second chance and it makes your heart melt. You can't help but smile and laugh as you interact with these special beings. Each animal has its own unique rescue story and you really get to connect with each one! On the day that I went, Lee had recently rescued a Turkey from a factory farm. It was still very weak. Lee allowed me to cut off the turkeys clip from the factory and I named him Estaban! It was such a rewarding experience.
CJ Acres Animal Rescue Farm, in my visits, seemed to be a virtual Garden of Eden; a place of shalom between humans and non-humans. The obvious love for the animals exhibited by the director, Lee Sackett, and the devotion of his volunteers is warming and awe inspiring. They do the work needed to keep blameless folk safe.
CJ Acres is a great place to volunteer and support! I have been doing so for almost 2 years and seeing those pigs run out of the woods never gets old :) You get to be very hands-on with these animals and learn their stories. Lee is great at promoting compassionate consumption (if you love animals- don't eat them!) and taking great care of these wonderful creatures. I'm proud to be able to be a part of such a great organization and to see the farm grow year after year.
One of the most rewarding volunteer activities I do! I have been a volunteer at CJ Acres going on my 2nd year and have loved every minute of it. I enjoy caring for the animals and making sure they have a happy & peaceful life. If you are looking for a rewarding experience that will make you smile from your heart, then look no further. It's more than just a community of people that love animals, it's an extended family of great people I am proud to call my friends.
Please check out a few video of mine from the farm:
I started going to CJ Acres Animal Rescue Farm 3 years ago and have started volunteering as of June 2013. The events held on the farm are fun, the fundraisers are great, and the volunteer sessions are also a great time where you get to help with the farm and also interact with the 75 animal residents. I love how this organization is 100% volunteer run so when donating you know that all of your money is going directly to helping those animals which have spent their lives abused and neglected until they were rescued and brought to a great, safe place. This is SUCH a great cause and I would recommend that anyone who can send a donation to help the animals and come volunteer. The found of CJ Acres is constantly working to keep things going, putting in tons of volunteer time and out in the field rescuing animals from dangerous situations. Farm animals are so lucky to have a fantastic place like this!
I've been volunteering at CJ Acres for more than two years, as well as contributing financially and attending fundraisers. To hear the stories of the animals' dreadful pasts and sometimes harrowing rescues, then to see the healing that happens and the joy that results is amazing, rewarding, and life-changing. Working hands-on with the animals provides unique insights into individual cow or pig or chicken personalities, insights most city- and suburb-dwellers never get to experience.
I began volunteering at CJ Acres Animal Rescue Farm early this year and I can honestly say it has been a life changing experience. I love to be around animals and care for them any way that I can. At CJ Acres you get to spend real quality time with the animals, you get to learn about then and you get to help tend to their needs. I was also able to become a farm-tern and while it could get very warm working outside it has been an amazing experience that I will never forget. I can't wait to go back and see my animal friends.
I first volunteered at CJ Acres back in March of this year, and have since been back to volunteer 5 additional times. The place is incredible. You really get hands on opportunities to work with a very wide variety of animals. It is rewarding work - kind of therapeutic to get out of the city and day to day life and into a caring farm environment. More importantly, the organization helps to promote compassion for animals who otherwise are treated horribly. The volunteer staff are knowledgeable and incredibly hard working. I recommend anyone with an interest in working with animals and helping promote a better understanding of the realities of factory farming to attend one of the many volunteer sessions at CJ Acres. It is both rewarding and fun.
I am a volunteer and a donor to CJ Acres Animal Rescue Farm. I can't think of a more deserving charity. All the money goes to the care of the animals--nobody takes a salary from this organization. Everyone, including the Lead Mare (Executive Director) is a volunteer. The animals receive the best care. The animals may be adopted, and if not, they end up with a wonderful home for life right there at CJ Acres Animal Rescue Farm. CJ Acres is straightforward, honest, and does a fantastic job.
I have had the honor and pleasure of visting CJ Acres Farm this year. I was treated like a family member upon my arrival, given a personal tour of the farm by Mr. Sackett and his wife and was able to meet ea. and every resident (fur and feathered) personally and hear their story. The harmony and blissfulness of the animals and the farm was truly inspiring. I encouraged everyone to go to the farm, volunteer some of your time and experience what I was able to first hand and will never forget.
Volunteering at this rescue farm is the most rewarding experience. The Sacketts are very learned and helpful in assisting volunteers with a clear understanding of the needs of each of the animals they have rescued. It is the hands on that is very exciting. Everytime we volunteer, it is a little different so you can never get bored by going month after month. The animals grow on you in such a way that when one of them acts in a way that they didn't before - you will know it. It is awesome to see a piggy finally eat because she trusts you .. or a horse come by and sniff your hair and recognizes you..or a sheep that stands close enough to see their remarkable eyes. As it is, I go out to the farm regularly but know if I lived closer I would be there all the time. The surrounding environment is peaceful and quiet. You can lose yourself in this amazing nature. Will I go back -- OH YEAH .. Do I reccomend it to others -- MOST CERTAINLY! Thank you Sacketts for all you do and stand for. I am proud to be your volunteer.
I have known about CJ Acres since they came to Keystone Heights and was fasinated with the fact that the Sacketts cared so passionatly about what they do, they would relocate the animals with them. Seeing the changes in the animals is a wonderful thing. CJ Acres Animal Rescue Farm provides for the animals that are not the common household pet - horses, pigs and ducks. They are truly the "in-need" animals of negelect and abuse.
I am a 14-year-old who volunteers for this farm and I really love it. I especially love the horses and spending time with them. The other volunteers are nice and I really like all the animals that they help. I've been here for about a year and I hope to continue with them until I graduate cause its fun and they help animals.