SAFE is a farm animal sanctuary nestled in the heart of Quebec’s Eastern Townships. It was founded in 2017 by Catherine Gagnieux. As the only registered farm sanctuary in Quebec, its mission is to welcome unwanted or rescued farm animals in need into a safe, healthy environment, free of suffering and exploitation, for the rest of their lives. Equally important, SAFE thrives to encourage compassion towards farm animals, through educational programs, organized visits, social media and events and general contact with the public.
How it all started: In fall 2016, Catherine, founder of SAFE, purchased the property that would allow her to turn her dream of opening a farm animal sanctuary into a reality. SAFE’s story begins when three big pigs –Pumba, Matilda and Oreo– escaped on their way to a slaughterhouse in Eastern Ontario. These adventurous souls roamed the countryside for over a month before finally being rescued and temporarily taken in by a sanctuary in Ontario. Upon hearing their story, Catherine knew the time had come for SAFE to start its rescuing. In late July of that same year, Catherine was contacted by a friend who had heard of a new-born calf about to be auctioned off for meat. He intervened before it was too late, later asking Catherine if she could take in this calf which he had named Calvin. One by one, and over time, many animals have joined the SAFE family. Here, they have found a place to live out their lives in peace, free from fear and suffering. Today, SAFE continues to grow and thrive, as does the dream of a better future for farm animals everywhere.