Meet the harpist who heals

Written by Edgar’s Mission

Facebook, 20 May 2022

For National Volunteer Week, here is the incredible story of one of our very special enrichment volunteers, Vimukti. For over three years, she has been playing the harp for many of the sick, injured and frightened animals who find sanctuary at Edgar’s Mission.

“Spring and Summer of 2018/2019 was very hot and dry. There was no food in the forest, nor in the fields. We were supporting the kangaroos’ diet by making sure they had access to water and bales of grass. We were also advised to make up and put out specific kangaroo muesli, which we did every second day.

Prior to this in the winter, a ewe and her lamb had escaped from being moved to their new home. The owner tried to find them but gave up, thus abandoning them to the forest. On occasion, I would sight them in the far distance. They were very elusive. That ewe was a very protective mother.

In mid-January, there were signs the sheep were coming here at night with the kangaroos for a feed. Then one day as I was putting food out, they came out of the forest and up closer to the food whilst I was there. I could not believe what I was seeing, I was horrified. The growing little boy had a horn that was turning in and just starting to touch the flesh under his eye.

I took pictures and emailed Edgar’s Mission asking for advice on what to do. Pam was quick to respond and organised a time to come out to access the situation. EM would take the sheep, but first, they had to be caught. We needed the help of the most experienced animal darter, Manfred.

With each day we could not catch them, the horn grew and pressed into the young ram’s eye. It was horrible to watch as his whole demeanour showed signs of the increasing pain. It took us 15 attempts over three weeks and many a bush chase before we were finally successful, but it was done. Both mother Maggie and son Arthur were on their way to EM.

The good news is Arthur’s horn was cut off and the eye was saved.

I had formed an attachment to them and could not bear the thought of not knowing what would become of them. Pam gave permission for me to play the harp for them whilst they were recovering and settling in. They responded really well, especially Arthur.

It was two weeks before I could visit them again. They were out in a field, so I made my way and played. They listened and then when I spoke to them, they ran away. I let them go, my duty was done. Not to waste my trip there, Pam mentioned a goat and a pig and some chickens and others who would benefit, so I played for them and have been going there ever since.

I fell in love with being able to spend time with the animals using the harp and my voice therapeutically. I fall in love with whomever I am asked to spend time with. Whenever I have any fear, it quickly dissipates as I focus on the intent to do what is best for whom I am with. I empty my mind of expectations and explore our possibilities creating a cradle of sound that is based on LOVE.

As a certified therapeutic harp practitioner, I thought I would be providing a service for people in aged, dementia and palliative care. This was where I did my training.

I am now focused on providing this service for animals whether they be farmed, domestic or wildlife. As I learn and become more adept in working with animals, I realise I have found my life’s work. I want to be able to show others how it can be done.

One day I hope to be able to raise funding for the shelters and sanctuaries I visit.

It would be great if we did not need a sanctuary such as Edgar’s Mission but until that day comes, I am so very happy to be able to provide this service and be an EM Volunteer. I am so very grateful for this opportunity.”

We cannot thank Vimukti enough for the beautiful music and joy she brings into our world.

Maggie and Arthur
Arthur with his troublesome horn
Arthur and Maggie at EM
Arthur and Maggie at EM
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