Sunburst Farms Rescue was founded by DeAnna Wahlheim in 2018.
Sunburst Farms Rescue was established to provide a home for farm animals in need. The rescue started in the summer of 2018 when a friend gave the owners name to the Apache Junction Animal Control as a possible place to help care for some animals involved in a cruelty case. Originally these animals were going to be held here until they did their investigation. However, their prior owner decided to voluntarily relinquish them during the process. Animal control asked if we would like to keep them and of course we said yes. After that, word got around that we were rescuing and we began getting calls about other animals, most of them were owner surrenders from people who were no longer able to care for them and needed to find them a home.
DeAnna Wahlheim already had a few farm animals and horses that she used for equine assisted psychotherapy in her counseling practice. She is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Arizona and certified in EAP serving clients recovering from single incident and complex post-traumatic stress disorder. The animals that began to arrive were a good fit for the clients served at her facility. With the continuation of animal intakes, their veterinary care, their feed, pens, and other needs, it was clear that it could not continue without financial help from the community. In October 2018, we started the non-profit to be able to continue this service.