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ALPINE, Calif. — Leaders of an animal sanctuary in San Diego County are asking for the community’s help in keeping the retreat open.

The Children’s Nature Retreat is a 20-acre ranch in Alpine. It has served as a place of refuge for horses and other animals for five years.

The ranch was already struggling because of closures during the pandemic. Then, they were forced to evacuate more than 100 animals as the Valley Fire scorched 17,665 acres nearby.

Retreat organizers say the community helped get the animals to safety. Now, she and her team need more help.

“It’s been very challenging time,” Executive Director Agnes Barrelet said. “We’re trying to hold it together so we don’t lose everything.”

Barrelet says they are seeking donations to help maintain a team who can feed and care for more than 130 animals at the retreat.

As of Sunday, they had raised about $1,100 of their $15,000 goal. Click here to see the GoFundMe.