Community Raises $30,000 In 2 Days For Beekeepers After Their Hives Were Destroyed By Vandals
December 31, 2017
An act of vandalism killed half a million bees and nearly wiped out an Iowa couple’s honey business – until their community rallied behind them and raised more than $30,000 in two days.
Tori and Justin Engelhardt’s of Sioux City woke up Thursday morning and discovered vandals had broken into their bee farm and destroyed all 50 of their beehives.
Justin conceded the outlook “looked really hopeless” and doubted the business could survive such a large financial hit.
But then, support came pouring in overnight. News of the vandalism spread and many people in the surrounding communities opened their hearts and wallets in support of the Engelhardts.
As of Sunday morning, a GoFundMe page approved by the Englehardts had raised 30,693 from 838 donors.
“Thank you to everyone for your generous contributions and your amazing show of support,” the Englehardts wrote on their Wild Hill Honey Facebook page. “Because of you, we will be able to continue our business in the spring. We are deeply moved by your compassion. Between the contributions and the equipment we were able to salvage, our needs have been met.”
The Engelhardts are among the rare beekeepers from a northern state who keep their hives at home during the winter. When the vandals knocked over the hives, it fatally exposed the 500,000 bees to the bitter cold conditions.