In January 2016 I quit my job in architecture and embarked on an epic journey around the world (documented on my blog and Instagram). 22 months and 17 countries later I arrived back in Oregon, profoundly changed, and determined to take my life in a new direction.
While I got in plenty of care free exploration, over the course of my travels I also had the honor of visiting and volunteering at animal sanctuaries in Australia, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, India, Sri Lanka, Egypt, Spain, Italy, and Denmark. Everywhere I went I witnessed heartbreaking abuse and exploitation of animals. But it was the tireless, and deeply compassionate work of those running animal sanctuaries which gave me hope. There are more and more people taking the initiative to help animals in recent years, building them places of safe haven. Half of the sanctuaries I visited wouldn't have even existed had I taken my trip 5 or 10 years earlier. However, rescue work is exhausting, non-stop, and emotionally and mentally taxing. And what I saw, over and over, is that on top of all the work it takes to keep a sanctuary running, they also have to beg for money 24/7. It's enough to burn someone out, and it can even mean the failure of a sanctuary.
I had too many highlights and favorite places to count. But it was my time at these sanctuaries which was truly life changing. As I got closer and closer to home, I started to think about how I could contribute to the incredible work being done around the world in the name of compassion. Haven Hearts was directly inspired by those doing rescue work, and by both the animals I had the honor of helping, and those I had to leave behind.
With Haven Hearts I hope to provide both a delicious and wholesome treat you can feel good about feeding your pup, and the opportunity for animal lovers everywhere not just to learn about animals in need, but to support them directly. Animals bring so much joy into our lives. Let's return the favor by making this world a little bit kinder for them.