Goats, Chickens, and Pigs, Oh My! St. John Buys a Farm During Quarantine


Erica St John

Ms. St John at her farm with her three goats, Rosie, Sissy, and Timmy

Have you adopted a new pet during quarantine? Erica St John, Westridge’s Service and Community Engagement Coordinator, is one step ahead with her newly bought farm. St John’s childhood dream was to own a farm, and she saw quarantine as the perfect opportunity to get this project started.

St John has a deep love for animals and wanted to create an environment where rescued animals could enjoy a life outside of factory farms and chemical testing labs. “I just started to bring animals home and then later just a lot of volunteer work [for animal shelters].”

Even as a child, St John had a love for animals. She recalled having a hard time eating meat as a child, leading to her decision to become a vegetarian at age ten. She remembers bringing home stray animals she found around her neighborhood to take care of them. 

After some time, St. John’s love for animals has led her down a path toward animal rights advocacy. She felt that it was a part of her duty to fight for the fair treatment of animals, especially in a time where the environment seems to not be in the best condition. “[Animals] don’t have a voice to tell us what they need and what they’re scared of. I always felt the desire to be their voice,” she said.

Ms. St John’s chickens enjoying their newly made chicken coop (Erica St John)

Out in the fields of Shadow Hills, St. John’s farm, over half an acre of land, consists of rescued animals. The farm is home to three goats: a pair of twin sisters named Rosy and Sissy, and one male goat named Timmy. She also shelters chickens that were rescued from a factory farm where they were debeaked, and one very protective rooster to share the chicken coop with them. Two pot-bellied pigs soon joined the crowd; Wilbur was rescued from a shelter in Los Angeles and Georgie was found by animal rescue services tied to a tree in a park. 

St. John would like to drive home the idea that everyone should educate themselves on how animals are treated. Whether that be volunteering at your local humane society or writing a research paper on factory farming, she believes that staying up to date with information is essential. 

Towards the very end of the interview, Ms. St John shared a quote from Barack Obama. “The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope.”