Though the microsanctuary model in many ways focuses on typically farmed species, any vegan home can be a microsanctuary when caring for animals who aren’t usually seen as “companions”: chickens, pigs, fishes, mice, rats, rabbits, insects, and more.
A microsanctuary can be as small as one rescued individual!
A microsanctuary starts from the premise that our space and our resources, no matter how limited, often are still sufficient for us to provide sanctuary to individual animals RIGHT NOW in order to prevent them from ever again being used as commodities. Additionally, microsanctuaries aren’t to be seen as stepping stones to larger sanctuaries but ends unto themselves: providing the best care to microsanctuary residents is a worthy goal, and the pressure to get bigger should always come second to sustainability and some degree of self-reliance. (In other words, beware of fundraising… Relying on outside funds to take in and care for MORE animals will always be in some degree of tension with doing what you can with what you have. That’s why there’s such an urgent need to grow microsanctuaries collectively, not to grow a limited number of microsanctuaries…)
Microsanctuary Resource Center has very deliberately avoided putting concrete number restrictions on what a microsanctuary “is” (and “is not”)–that’s not really the point. MRC is not a regulatory body or police force; our goal has always been to create community around animal liberation and make it possible to provide the best care for as many individuals as possible.
At the same time, we HAVE put number limits on our micro-grant program due to a need to focus our grant giving, as well as to move towards supporting much smaller places.
Along with all of this, of course, a microsanctuary should align itself with and practice the Core Principles, which not only promote ethical consistency and high care standards, but also reflect on what “sanctuary” truly means.
This sense of dedication to the service of individuals in need, as a way to end ALL forms of oppression, is what lies at the heart of sanctuary—and on an individual level truly defines a microsanctuary.