Editorial Note: This is part of a series highlighting Lady Freethinker’s Urgent Need Fund 2023 grant program recipients. The program was created to help nonprofit organizations with animal rescue, care, and awareness projects improving the treatment of animals. Learn more about the program and how to apply here.

Lisa Kario, founder and director of Freedom Acres Rescue, said her world was transformed by an off-chance conversation with a friend about the opening of an animal sanctuary nearby. 

“The minute I set foot on the sanctuary ground, I had a feeling of profound peace,” Kario told Lady Freethinker in a recent interview. “It allowed me to identify my lifelong yearning. Within six months, I had a sanctuary property…and the rest is history.” 

Kario now operates a vegan sanctuary and forever home for pigs, chickens, goats, alpacas, and more. Every animal that comes to the rescue has their own unique story, often being rehomed from cases of abuse and neglect. 

Freedom Acres takes pride in allowing its residents to live as natural a life as possible. 

“They are never confined except at feed time,” Kario told us. “They are free to use a barn — or not — for shelter. People often remark on how relaxed the residents seem.”

Pig at Freedom Acres Rescue

A Resident at Freedom Acres (Courtesy of Lisa Kario | Freedom Acres Rescue)

Located in Oxford, Georgia, Freedom Acres is right in the middle of a community where hunting and animal husbandry are the norm. But the neighbors raised eyebrows were never enough to stop Kario in her mission to provide these animals a peaceful home. 

Through visits from local schools and and other various educational opportunities, Kario has seen her communitys culture shift. 

“They may think me eccentric, but they are always ready to lend a helping hand,” Kario told LFT. “I notice a shift in perspective when outside people visit. They come to understand what the residents lives would have been but for the rescue. They are able to freely interact with the residents and I often see a heart/mind connection open up.”

Two alpacas at Freedom Acres Rescue

Zoe and Chantilly (Courtesy of Lisa Kario | Freedom Acres Rescue)

Freedom Acres reached out to LFT’s Urgent Need Fund after two alpacas, Zoe and Chantilly, arrived from a breeder with severe underlying health issues. Thanks to your support, LFT granted Freedom Acres $5,000 to help with Zoe and Chantilly’s medical care. 

Upon immediate hospitalization, it was revealed that the two had been suffering from untreated parasites for many years — which prevented them from absorbing nutrients

As there was no cure, Zoe sadly passed away soon after that initial hospital visit. 

However, despite all she has been through, Chantilly is doing well according to Kario. 

Your funding has given Chantilly a second chance at life, as Freedom Acres continues to provide her with supplemental feed, medicine, and lots of love.

Alpaca and Two Goats

Chantilly and Friends (Courtesy of Lisa Kario | Freedom Acres Rescue)

We are proud to support Freedom Acres through the Urgent Need Fund, and we are ecstatic to hear about Chantilly’s improvement. 

It is thanks to all of our supporters that we are able to grant life-saving money to organizations like Freedom Acres. 

We thank you for your continued support and all you are doing to save animals around the world. 

To get connected with all that Freedom Acres does, you can visit their website here