Rikki's Refuge, under the Life Unlimited of Virginia, Inc. umbrella, certainly deserves the word "sanctuary." Rikki's is home to 1,300 animals of 22 different species, many of whom are differently-abled with issues ranging from missing legs/paws/ears/eyes to chronic conditions that can be managed with good food, medical care and lots of love. Other places would have put them down; at Rikki's they live out their lives in peace and love. The hard-working staff is there in all kinds of weather, doing their jobs over and above written descriptions and caring for those furry lives. From the largest steer to the smallest chicken, you can see how happy and well the animals are when you visit. Rikki's is a happy, uplifitng place. Visit and see for yourself!
What can you say about an organization that takes in animals with disabilities, animals who have been so badly abused that they no longer care to trust people, animals with chronic medical conditions that require care and medication which their original owners don't want to provide, animals who are "too old and won't play anymore; we want a kitten/puppy," animals who have lost their homes because of illness, death, divorce or financial woes? What can you say about an organization that gives all of these creatures a for-ever home, with food, shelter, medical care and huge whopping doses of love every day? What can you say about an organization that is no-kill, that promotes cruelty-free eating for us humans that advocates tirelessly for spaying and neutering of your pets and ferals? What can you say about an organization that exists on private donations, money from bake sales, yard sales, a thrift shop and various events and doesn't take one penny of government money? What can you say about the people who work everyday in all kinds of weather and conditions to care for 1,300 animals of 22 different species? You say: This is Rikki's Refuge and I'm proud to be associated with them!
I can't say enough wonderful things about this fine organization. From the countless number of animals whose lives it has changed and rescued to the ways it has helped me through difficult times in my life. After losing a loved one the only place I could go to be reminded of the joys of life was Rikkis Refuge.
So many animals have had their lives completely changed because of the hard work and dedication of these people.
The animals that come here know they are now safe and will always have a safe environment to live out the rest of their days.
Many choose to repay the refuge with hard work also. There are spokeskitties and spokesdoggies who get the word out and represent the refuge. There are fowl who help keep the flea and tick population under control. There are dogs the patrol the borders at night to keep unfriendliness at bay. And there there are the animal caretakers who look out for other animals at the refuge.
One special case is a goose that keeps a careful watch on an elderly donkey. After Bub the donkey lost his mate this elderly donkey was quickly befriended by a goose who showed up one day. The goose never leaves Bub's side, "protects" him from others and even escorts him to bed when the goose senses he is getting tired. It is truly one of the most amazing things I have ever witnessed.
Please visit rikkisrefuge.org to see many more inspiring stories.
Life Unlimited of Virginia, also known as Rikki's Refuge, is an outstanding example of what an animal sanctuary can do to help unwanted animals. What I love about Rikki's is how much the sanctuary can help people and even whole communities. My best experience at the Refuge was with a beautiful Treeing Walker Coonhound, appropriately named Walker. He was well known in Orange County Virginia, and in the Reston VA communities as the sweet dog that survived horrible treatment, such as being shot in the back and left in the woods to die. Rikki's took the Coonhound in and saved his life, but who knew that Walker would later reciprocate in his own way. I took Walker in as soon as a met him, and he served as an official spokesdog for the Refuge. My brother, who had just returned from nine months in Iraq, was wounded on the outside, but also on the inside. My brother was able to heal because of the love of animals, especially Walker. After four months of stress I was able to talk my brother into visiting Rikki's with me, and he became a new person that day. He had fun with the animals, and at the end of the day I heard him laughing, something I had not heard him do for over a year! His laughter was music to my ears. Walker was able to help my brother heal on the inside, allowing him to stop contemplating suicide like so many other soldiers have done. Walker passed on and crossed the Rainbow Bridge three years ago, but his story lives on as one of many, many wonderful stories that Rikki's Refuge has to offer.
If there is a heaven on earth, it is sure to be Rikki's Refuge, a beautiful 450 acre animal sanctuary in central Virginia. If the 1200+ animals saved by Rikki's could talk, they would tell you that it is a glorious place with loving, compassionate people changing the world, one critter at a time. I work with the dogs, all who had a very sad life story before they found their way to Rikki's. Now they flourish in the green fields with a second chance in life. So many of the animals never knew what kindness was, until they entered the gates here. Rikki's Refuge has never met an animal that was not worthy of living a full and happy life, no matter what it takes. Truly heaven on earth!
WOW ... I have loved this place since they started in 1998 !!!! Saving animals no one else cares about, the handicapped, the elderly. Way to go !!!!! May you grow and save more and more every year forever and ever.
This place is a true sanctuary for a variety of animals. Some from as far away as Egypt. Many of the animals come from hoarding or abusive situations, upon arrival at the Refuge all animals know nothing but kindness love and compassion.
Rikki's Refuge is the most amazing place I have ever been to .... the many, many happy animals bounding about in neighborhoods built just for them can't help but to make you happy too. Pay attention and you'll see the amazing love and care that is given to all the animals by the staff and volunteers. Animals who would have died if Rikki's wasn't there to care for them. Wonderful place. And the humane education they provide to so many groups .... and you see teens and young adults coming out to volunteer, getting involved in their community .... and they say it all started with a school trip to Rikki's when they were in grade school !!!! How wonderful is that !!!
I love Rikki's Refuge !!!! Saving the animals nobody wants, like the elderly, the ill, the handicapped .... what a wonderful mission !!!!
Rikki's Refuge is the most peaceful place on earth! With over 1200 animals, many of whom are "differently-abled", the animals get marvelous care, and lots and lots of love. Duke, the spokesdog (pictured here) was born without eyes. In a shelter situation, he would have been euthanized. But, at Rikki's, he's living a wonderful life! Boomer, an aussie mix, has made himself Duke's guide dog! And Duke goes to schools and events to teach people how to be kind to others who are different -- they are all the same on the inside. Rikki's teaches care and humanity and love to humans, as well as animals.
The care that is given to the animals at Rikki's Refuge is incredible! All of the staff and volunteers truly love the animals. And the animals are happy, too! The people are the most hard-working people that I've ever met. They certainly care for all of the needs of the animals.
Rikki's Refuge is an incredible no-kill sanctuary for animals of all shapes and sizes. The dogs, cats, pigs, horses, emus, guinea pigs, sheep, goats, etc., live out their lives in a safe and caring environment. Considering that there are over 1200 animals that call Rikki's home, it truly takes a village of dedicated volunteers. Having spent many hours there, I honestly am in awe of how well they keep everything running so smoothly. But, none of this would happen without those willing to give of their time, resources and help from others. I believe in Kerry and her vision of what Rikki's Refuge stands for and for those who support her every step of the way.
As a volunteer for Rikki's, I can say with absolute certainty that this is a place that goes above and beyond to help any animal that comes into their care. From cats to dogs and horses to guinea pigs, no animal at Rikki's goes without the proper care or love. I have enormous respect for everyone who works so tirelessly at Rikki's.
How wonderful it would be if there were more no-kill rescues like Rikki's Refuge, Life Unlimited Of Virginia Inc. The animals are cared for as family. Your donation goes a long way at Rikki's Refuge. They have a handful of employees who work very hard to care for the animals. The annual budget is minimal, with almost no overhead. If you love animals, please try to come by for a tour. Their location is Central Virginia, in what is mostly an agricultural area. I bet most people have never seen a real peacock up close. So happy the time I was able to be there for the “peacock parade.” As a supporter & volunteer, I have helped with many events. Thank goodness for all the volunteers who help. As a result, all events & functions are handled by people who donate their time and talents. All donations to Rikki's Refuge far exceed other nonprofits. Your money is put to good use here. If anyone would like to know more, please have them contact me. Thank you for Rikki’s Refuge.
For everyone who envisions an animal sanctuary is all sunlight and roses and birds landing on your shoulder to sing to you - it's NOT Disney! It's hard work to feed and shelter and medicate over 1,000 animals of all sizes and temperments, in all kinds of weather - yet the staff and volunteers of Rikki's Refuge do it willingly every day of the year. And they still find time to dispense love and kindness to every creature on the property. When you leave Rikki's after a day of volunteering you're often exhausted, sweaty and not the best-smelling person in the world - but you'll sure feel good about yourself and are already looking forward to the next time!
Rikki's Refuge is home to the elderly, the unwanted, the abandoned, the abused, the chronically ill; all those beings that no one else will take in. The work that is done there everyday by a small, dedicated staff is remarkable. Miracles happen at Rikki's every day. Animals that no one thought had a chance of a happy life recover at Rikki's with lots of love, lots of caring, vet care, a warm place to sleep and, of course, food! I've volunteered at Rikki's for almost three years and my heart is still touched by the caring, compassionate, hard-working staff every time I'm there.
I have heard that Rikki's Refuge is a wonderful sanctuary for animals who have no where else to go. That Rikki's take exceptional care of there animals. It has been my pleasure to help in areas that I was able to.
I've been a volunteer, fan & lover of Rikki's for over 10 years! Not only do they help so many cats, they help every walk of life that they possibly can! Anything the animals may need, they get. Whether it's medical help, food or love, these animals get everything they need! The dedicated staff works day & night to ensure the health & safety of all the Rikki's animals, sometimes staying 2-3 days in a row to make sure things are going as needed. The founder of this organization works tirelessly to submit grants & tax forms, obtain donations, doing anything & everything to help these animals. You will not find another individual who cares as much for the animals! Every donation received is used for the sole purpose of the animals in need - a rare quality to find now a days! As a whole, this organization is the tops!
My family & I are active in animal rescue & rights. Rikki's is one of the most far-racing & dedicated animal sanctuaries we've come across & we are honored to help them in fundraising & awareness efforts. Kudos to all at Rikki's for their kind hearts & endless hard work on behalf of all...fur, feathers or scales, differently abled or older, previously unwanted or in need, they now know love.
I regularly support Rikki's Refuge as a donor, voter (on sites like Animal Rescue Site & facebook contests to help them win donations of both money and goods) and wholeheartedly promote them whenever I can. I use GoodSearch & GoodShop to benefit Rikki's. As a no-kill shelter where animals of any age, ability or background are accepted with love and understanding, they are very deserving of assistance wherever and whenever possible. Interacting with spokeskitty Vincent on facebook, I have witnessed the good they do for differently-abled animals as well as those who've been abused, abandoned or simply had no home to begin with. I am confident that whether you give $3 or $3000, buy a t-shirt or bid on auction items for Rikki's, volunteer personally with the animals or send supplies, that every kindness counts toward helping the animals.
Rikki's Refuge in Orange, Virginia is a dedicated no kill all species sanctuary. I have assisted by transporting cats to Rikki's, as well as collected foods, and delivered items from another volunteer who lives near me in Richmond. Everyone is always friendly and happy to be working to support the animals. They follow their guidelines strictly and everything is done properly. I love Rikki's and their spokes kitty, Opie.
I want to be a volunteer someday soon - Vincent D. Cat got his start with a group I volunteer with from time to time in Richmond, CARE. He is now Rikki's spokeskitty and giving voice to so many that can't speak (at least so that we hear them), but Vincent hears all! Rikki's is always doing so much for so many and I appreciate all they do each and every day of the year.
Review from Guidestar
After having followed this group on facebook and e-mailing with them my wife and I made a trip from Syracuse NY to visit them...they were everything they claimed to be. The atmosphere and attitude at Rikki's is amazing it really is all for the animals. We were very impressed!
Ever since I took the mini-tour I fell in complete love with this refuge! Even with all the animals there are, they all find a way to be spoiled and loved. All the employees have a great love for animals and truely make it a great place to volunteer.
Rikki's is a place where animals with few other options can find a home. They are a life sanctuary for the physically, emotionally and socially challenged animals that need more help than the typical animal refuge can provide.
The volunteers and staff care very much for the animals. I have met some great animal people there, not to mention some great animals. Vincent (spokescat) and Duke (spokesdog) are both handicapped, but don't let their physical circumstances keep them from being absolute charmers. It is a good place.
Review from Guidestar
Best Spokes Cat EVER.....again and again and again
Review from Guidestar