Above: Maia at Elephant Sanctuary Brazil
GOTHS FOR SANCTUARIES FUNDRAISER
At Elephant Sanctuary Brazil, we provide our elephants with freedom, autonomy, respect and a herd. But we need your support to offer elephants waiting for sanctuary this second chance at life.
OUR FIRST RESCUE MAIA: HER STORY OF RESILIENCE
When we visited Maia on the farm of the lawyer for the circus, you could clearly see she was ready to defend herself. It was a mindset we have seen before- I will hurt you before you have a chance to hurt me. Sadly, it’s a behavior you only see in elephants that have been on the receiving end of physical punishment. Maia was the ‘bad girl’ and emotionally bore the impact of that label every day.
Maia was scared and defensive, she was worried what those around her would do to her, and it showed the first time we closed her in the chute at the sanctuary. She had been easy and relaxed, but the second the gate closed behind her, she started to panic- she believed something terrible was about to happen. We immediately opened up and let her know that part of her life was over. Getting her used to the chute turned into a longer process, but helped her build trust in our care and her safety. She wasn’t a bad girl at all; she was a big softie who needed lots of reassurance. Maia has never really gotten over her dislike of strangers and is challenging to win over, but there is no denying she is a love.
LAYERS OF PROTECTION
At sanctuary, we don’t like to dwell on an elephant’s past. The elephants they were before are just the shells of who they are, and their choices are made to get them through to the next day. None of that defines who they truly are. But in acknowledging their past, we are able to see how much they have grown after their arrival.
For Maia, after 40 years of believing her label of ‘bad girl’ defined her, it’s incredible for her to know she is loved and supported for no other reason than who she is- and that she is awesome. We thank all who have helped her to understand just how special and cared for she is. We hope you will help those elephants who are waiting for sanctuary find themselves, too.
MAIA'S 40 YEARS OF CIRCUS AND CHAINS
BUT MAIA IS ONE OF THE LUCKY ONES.
SHE GOT HER SECOND CHANCE.
PLEASE DONATE NOW
GIVE OTHER ELEPHANTS THEIR SECOND CHANCE, TOO
Thank you for believing in a world where captive elephants like Maia deserve a second chance. We are incredibly grateful.
From circus and chains to sanctury. The story of Maia and Guida (2018)
MAIA & GUIDA
No story of Maia is complete without Guida in it. Maia spent most of her life on circus, traveling around South America with Guida. Both elephants were confiscated due to abuse and mistreatment and temporarily brought to a zoo. The zoo wasn’t interested in keeping them, so they were sent to live on a farm that was owned by the circus lawyer. There they lived for six years, on chains, separated by a strand of hotwire. On October 11, 2016, after 40 years of abuse and deprivation of all that is meaningful to an elephant, they took their first steps into sanctuary.
This upcoming anniversary on October 11 will be the second for Maia without Guida who passed away suddenly on June 25, 2019 . We are still joyous for Maia, but they were ‘Maia and Guida’ for over four decades, and it’s still hard to think of Maia’s journey without including Guida. For the love she and Guida gave to each other, for the immense growth Maia has gone through, for her opening up to trust after a lifetime of being treated so poorly, and for the absolute light and joy that Maia is. Elephant Sanctuary Brazil would not be the same without her.
MAIA AT SANCTUARY. FOREVER.
Sanctuary isn’t just a place it’s a new beginning, peace of mind, the elephants’ home. For the first time, Maia, Rana, Lady, and Mara have a life that is all about them. Thank you for helping provide this for them, and for those yet to come.
Every dollar makes a difference. Every sharing of their story spreads awareness. Every one of us can change their lives. Forever.
Scott and Kat Blais
Co-founders Global Sanctuary for Elephants
and Elephant Sanctuary Brazil