Now, a new chapter is unfolding, as Rio Tinto Borates has sold nearly 2,000 acres of the legacy site to the Lockwood Animal Rescue Center (ARC) at a discounted price. Here, within the centre’s wolf sanctuary, an innovative programme is helping to heal combat veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
“Rio Tinto is focused on sustainable development and being a corporate citizen to our surrounding communities,” said Nathan Francis, land manager at Rio Tinto Borates.
“We act on opportunities to benefit the community and environment where we can. With this particular sale, I believe we accomplished that.”
A sanctuary for wolves and warriors
The centre, which originally encompassed 20 acres of land adjacent to the legacy site, is home to more than three-dozen wolves and wolf-dogs. The animals are rescued from around the US and rehabilitated on the property.
Matthew Simmons, centre co-founder, explained that the wolf-dogs that Lockwood ARC cares for are the result of people breeding a wolf with a dog, and then breeding the offspring with wolves for several generations.
These animals can neither be domesticated, nor returned to the wild. The wolf-dogs at Lockwood ARC live in an “in-between” world – not quite wolves and not quite dogs. Similarly, many veterans who have served their country no longer feel quite at home as civilians, once their military service ends. That’s why Matthew and his wife, Lorin Lindner, centre co-founder and clinical psychologist, decided to merge the two worlds by creating the Warriors and Wolves programme in 2011.