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Luke's Monthly Summary May 2016

Mon 6th Jun 2016

It is totally inspiring to be able to pull these reports together each month and all down to the fantastic powers, heart and dedication of winning teams who are driving forward our amazing projects. The below summaries everything we represent – let’s keep the fire burning!

Volunteer Teams and parcels

47 medical aid parcels valued at £36,870.90 were dispatched this month with vet teams going to Botswana, Zambia, Grenada, Malawi, India, Bulgaria and Thailand. Please consider donating to our parcel appeal to help even more animals in need.

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India

Ranchi – Praveen (who manages our Ranchi programme) reported that 2053 dogs were rabies vaccinated and 645 surgeries were completed this month. This alone is incredible as Praveen was called over to Malawi to lend his powers to the city drive there for half this month, so he had to split himself in two! In total, 21,635 dogs have now been vaccinated in Ranchi this year, over 50,000 dogs sterilised in the last 3 years and there has not been a case of rabies reported at the Government hospital in the last 12 months. This is totally uplifting news! Next year is a big one for Ranchi, as it will mark the completion of our three-year vaccination programme.

India – ITC – A total of 197 vets have been trained at the ITC in India, so far this year. As well as running the training courses at the ITC, Ilona and Nigel (who run the ITC and WVS Asia Operations) are also overseeing the growing working equine projects we are trying to support. The need of the abandoned racehorses and the donkeys carting sand up to the roads from the rivers has escalated markedly in the last 12 months, so these programmes do a huge amount of good as there is absolutely no veterinary aid in these places. There is a direct (and desperate) need for a vehicle to support the working equine teams. It will cost about £8,000 to get what we need so any donations would be super welcome and there is space for lots of logos!!!

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Goa – Julie, like Praveen was also called up for Malawi but still managed to oversee a fantastic month by her team in Goa. The state wide campaign is progressing brilliantly and MR Goa vaccinated 2209 street dogs this month. The team were also diverted to assist an injured cow – a story that uplifts us all and serves to underline that every animal matters.

Thailand 

Our Director of Operations, Jamie is doing an exceptional job overseeing WVS Thailand. As the new training centre gets going, it is immense work and the team are doing brilliantly. We have now started to use the Thai ITC as a central (and cost effective) hub for helping struggling charities and NGOs in the region, supporting them through direct veterinary aid using the ITC teams. It is a great concept and the results speak for themselves. Thanks again to both the Dogs Trust and the Marchig Trust for their ongoing faith and support of our work.

Majiu (Clinical Director of the Thai ITC) reported as follows: We had a sterilisation clinic with BLES at Sukhothai, the team consisted of a vet and a nurse from the ITC and a volunteer vet and a nurse from the UK. We are delighted to report that 164 animals were sterilised and vaccinated in just 7 days. 

A vet and a nurse from the ITC joined Lanta Animal Welfare in an emergency sterilisation clinic at Koh Mook, southern Thailand. The island is only accessible for a short part of the year and there is a serious dog population problem. Over 100 dogs were sterilised on the island, significantly decreasing the risk of the local people poisoning the ownerless dogs in the future.

We had a two-week cat sterilisation clinic on the islands in the south, Koh Yao Noi and Yai and Koh Phi Phi. The first week was awesome and we sterilised between 89 to 108 cats every day. The second week on Koh Phi Phi was a bit unlucky for us, the island got hit by a storm which made it extremely difficult to find cats. In total, in 10 days, 795 cats were sterilised and vaccinated on these islands. In addition, we also sterilised 7 dogs!

We accepted three vet students from Chiang Mai University to do part of their clinical rotation at the ITC/shelter clinic. They started on May 30th and will be staying for a week and a half. Having the students over is very positive and a big step towards collaborating with Chiang Mai University.

There has been a few parvo-outbreaks this year. For this reason we decided to create a parvo-free hotspot around the ITC and have vaccinated 170 dogs with mixed vaccines. 

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WVS Care for Dogs shelter

Ann (Shelter Manager) reported that the team have also conducted the following rescues and had 12 adoptions this month:

Zumo – As an unwanted pet, he was dumped at a temple.  Later on, he was offered a home by seemingly wonderful people.  But, as time went by, it was discovered that he was being kept in a very small cage.  When the monks went to visit, they were very upset at how Zumo was being kept.  They were also shocked to see the horrible condition he was in.  Zumo has now been bought into our care for the treatment he so desperately needed.  Thank you to the very kind monks who acted quickly to provide Zumo with the care and compassion he was lacking.  The future is looking much brighter for Zumo thanks to the kindness of strangers and we will see him find a good home.

Mhee Supha-Si – We were alerted to an emergency situation regarding a young dog.  Reports were that Mhee Supha-Si had been trying to give birth for approximately 4 days.  She was having difficulty due to an old injury after being hit by a car that affected her pelvis and one of her back legs.  As soon as she came into our care, our vet team prepared her for emergency surgery and we were all on standby to help assist with the new puppies.  Sadly, because of the length of time she was trying to give birth, the puppies had already passed away.  We were heartbroken.  Mhee Supha-Si is still in our care and we will help her the best we can for a brighter future.

Long – Long has been a homeless street dog.  One day, he decided to visit a local municipal hospital where he has been well taken care of and everyone there loves him.  Tragically, Long was hit by a car on Thursday night.  Knowing that their new friend needed help, they brought him to us so he could get the treatment he desperately needed.  Long is now in our care where he can recover from his injuries.  When we all work together, we can make a difference in the lives of so many.

Malawi

It is difficult to overstate the amazing endeavours by both the Mission Rabies and WVS teams on the ground in Blantyre this last month. In just 20 working days, 35,612 dogs were rabies vaccinated with over 91,000 children educated about rabies and 1,000 dogs were sterilised and treated. Kate (International Director of Mission Rabies and WVS One Mission Programme), organised the most brilliant vaccination drive with Andy, Jo, Fred, Dagmar, Cait and Niki – among others – who all worked tirelessly with an exceptional team of volunteers, to turn an African city from being one of the most rabies afflicted places in the world, to one of the least. A full report will follow, but our deepest thanks to the  Dogs Trust and MSD and all our supporters for making this a reality. It is amazing to think we could eliminate rabies from Malawi (as a whole!) for just £5m a year for 3 years. It sounds like huge money, but in the scale of disease control programmes it would be incredibly economical from a public health point of view. There has to be something in that and we should absolutely start to aim for national rabies elimination programmes.

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Other news

The One Mission concept is progressing really well, Eithne is spearheading a livestock initiative in rural Malawi and working very hard to drive this on. James (WVS MD) and I went to Zambia to help try to get Zambia's first wildlife clinic off the ground – it’s going to be a tough project, but worth powering on with. The meetings with the Malawian Government went very well last week in Blantyre – it is brilliant to have the Government's support with this project and we’re all empowered with the engagement and guidance of the DAHLD in the MR Malawi endeavours.

June is now looking immense, especially as we build up to another programme in Uganda launching in July. Every second counts – let’s crack on!

Rock on and very best!

Luke