A new bear with a familiar name joins the Vietnam bear family: a beautiful mural called Rainbow

08 November 2019

Ekaterina Sky besides her bear mural

A blast of cool and soothing colours now greets every person and every bear who enters our Vietnam Bear Rescue Centre (VBRC). We were joined during volunteer week by artist Ekaterina Sky from Canada who created the most magical mural on the electricity building wall right next to the entrance gates of the VBRC. Animals Asia Founder and CEO Jill Robinson named her after a bear with a very special story and a very appropriate name!

It all started when Ekaterina contacted our public relations office in Vietnam in the middle of October and offered to donate a mural painting to our Vietnam sanctuary. After seeing her website and her work on Instagram, our Vietnam PR team decided to make it happen with the help of our Education team. Ekaterina along with her husband were invited and hosted at VBRC for the duration of their volunteer work. It took a whole week to complete the enormous work of art with the support of the Education team and our grounds maintenance team who did an amazing job preparing the wall and setting up a scaffolding for Ekaterina to work from.

Ekaterina is painting

Ekaterina said:

It made me really happy to gift this mural to Animals Asia. I am so inspired by the work that they do to rescue and protect these bears. I was offered two wall choices. One was easily accessible, smooth and of a regular size. The other one was enormous and hard to access on scaffold due to the large step in front of the wall. Which wall do you think I chose?! It was really hard work but absolutely worth it. I’m so glad that Rainbow is now brightening up the sanctuary, which was already such a beautiful beacon of hope and recovery for these precious bears.”

Ekaterina also had a very warm welcome from our Founder and CEO Jill Robinson, Vietnam Director Tuan, our Senior Veterinary Surgeon Shaun Thomson as well as everyone at the sanctuary. We think you’ll agree it’s a very beautiful mural.

Animals Asia Founder and CEO Jill Robinson MBE (L) and Ekaterina Sky (R)

Jill Robinson said:

“Ekaterina asked me to name the bear and the name Rainbow just popped into my head in celebration of the beautiful rainbow of colours, but also in fond memory of the only bear we were able to release back into the wild in China in 2016, after she was caught in an illegal snare and we nursed her back to health. I'd been talking about Rainbow at the Animals for Asia conference in China at the weekend and of course with the blaze of colour it just seemed appropriate to have our now free China Rainbow remembered right in the Tam Dao National Park here at VBRC as a symbol of freedom.” 

We’re hugely grateful to Ekaterina for her mural and for helping to raise awareness about the suffering of bears through her social media. Rainbow now stands overlooking everyone who enters the sanctuary with those eyes that universally speak of a bear’s inner kindness, capacity for forgiveness and desire for freedom from cruelty.

READ MORE: Good luck, good bye, Rainbow