Lisa Redgrave, a UK vet and Clinical Director of Silva House Veterinary Centre (part of Highcroft Vet Group) volunteered at our International Training Centre in Ooty, India in November 2017. Her skills were invaluable in assisting the Indian vets and vet students in improving their surgical technique and veterinary knowledge. We’ve been chatting to her to find out why she decided to take time out of her career back home to volunteer with WVS!
I’d never done work abroad with a charity, but lots of my fellow vet friends recommended WVS, so decided to volunteer and help teach at ITC Ooty. It was amazing and such a rewarding experience! The Indian participants were so keen to learn and I love teaching so it was the perfect opportunity to use my skills and give something back.
Over 200 animals were neutered overall during my time there, and it just showed me how good veterinary practice can still be performed without all the gadgets and equipment we’re used to in the UK. We also had a few amputations and emergency cases from dog attacks and other incidents which meant we had to respond quickly and efficiently to a number of different cases. I remember one dog - we named her Sticker because she just loved cuddles so always used to stick to people – she had to have leg amputated but she recovered really well from the surgery and is still living at the centre waiting to be adopted. She was such an adorable puppy, I’m sure it won’t be long before she finds a home.
Working in Ooty, treating these animals who have no one else, and helping train new vets so they can do the same, was an incredible experience. It reminded me why I was a vet again.
I was also fortunate enough to travel a little after the placement, yet it felt like so much more than a holiday because this way I was able to see a whole new culture whilst using my skills as a vet at the same time. I’d definitely go back to volunteer again! I’m tempted to make teaching at the WVS Thailand ITC my next stop!Lisa and the team at Silva House also took part in the WVS Christmas Parcel Appeal, collecting funds with a collection pot on their reception desk and have raised over £200. With their help, our appeal raised an incredible £2,407 which enabled us to send out even more parcels full of veterinary supplies to struggling animal charities all over the world.
If you’re a vet and would like to volunteer your time and skills at one of our International Training Centres, please click here.
Alternatively, you can join in our fundraising efforts just like the team from Silva House – plenty of fundraising ideas can be found here!