A True Equine Sanctuary




The Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries (GFAS), the only globally recognized organization providing standards for identifying legitimate animal sanctuaries, is honored to announce the award of Verified status to Bear Valley Rescue of Sundre, Alberta as of September 15, 2015.

Verification means that Bear Valley Rescue meets the criteria of a true equine sanctuary and rescue and is providing humane and responsible care of the animals. To be awarded Verified status, an organization must meet GFAS’s rigorous and peer-reviewed animal care standards that are confirmed by a site visit and they must also adhere to a demanding set of ethical and operational principles.

“GFAS has over 100 certified equine facilities throughout the United States. The addition of Bear Valley Rescue is extraordinary, as they are our first Canadian equine group that has achieved Verification,” states Kellie Heckman, GFAS Executive Director.


“Bear Valley Rescue provides an essential resource for hundreds of animals in need in the Canadian province of Alberta. There is no other registered charitable animal welfare or rescue group in this geographic area that assists as many horses and farmed animals, regardless of the individual animal’s current health, age or circumstances,” explained Daryl Tropea, GFAS Senior Deputy Director.

“Since 2003, Bear Valley Rescue has found new homes for over 600 horses and provides lifetime sanctuary for those animals difficult to place. The leadership and volunteers of this organization work closely with a number of provincial and private organizations to ensure as many animals in need as possible, have the opportunity for rehabilitation and re-homing.”


“We are honored to be included in the GFAS family, and we will strive to meet and exceed the GFAS standards every day,” said Kathy Bartley, President of Bear Valley Rescue. “Our goal has always been to do the best that is possible for the animals, and being verified by GFAS helps us to ensure we are doing just that.”

The GFAS Equine Accreditation Program is made possible by a generous grant from The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®.

For more information on Bear Valley Rescue, visit www.bearvalleyab.org or call 403-637-2708.


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