Half Moon Bay, CA-based farmed animal sanctuary Sweet Farm recently launched an initiative to raise morale as people work from home due to the coronavirus pandemic. The sanctuary’s “Goat-2-Meeting” program allows schools, startups, and more to virtually interact with some of its 125 animal residents—including Paco the Llama, NIbblets the Goat, and Gizo the Cow—during their Zoom video meetings. Sweet Farm typically raises some of its funding for animal care through visitor programs and given current shelter-in-place orders, the nonprofit has turned to the innovative new program for support.
“We’ve been thrilled at the excitement around Goat-2-Meeting,” sanctuary founder Anna Sweet told VegNews. “We’ve had bookings from Fortune 100 companies, major Silicon Valley tech companies, and even Hollywood movie studios. It’s been a great way for us to continue our mission of creating a more compassionate world, when we’ve otherwise had to shut our farm doors during the COVID-19 quarantine. We’re using the money we raise from corporate meeting bookings to provide free virtual farm field trips to schools.” Those interested in the service can book an animal to appear as a guest on Zoom for a donation of $100.
Vegan meat brand Rebellyous Foods recently booked a Goat-2-Meeting and chatted with Brownie, a brown, floppy-eared goat. “Across the country, people are having to adapt to a radically new way of life, and there’s a lot of fear and uncertainty,” Rebellyous founder and CEO Christie Lagally said. “As a startup based in Seattle, we’re right in the heart of it all. All of this change is challenging, but it’s wonderful to see how people are stepping up, getting creative, and bringing people joy.”