AKI News: December 2021
Kindness to Animals has no Boundaries
AKI News-December 2021 Dear Animal-Kind Friends,
Even when you do everything right, things can still go wrong. And you have to ask for a little help. That’s the situation we’re finding most of our supported organizations in. They’ve done everything right (that’s one reason we chose them to be our Partners and Grantees): they slowly built their organizations and reputations, they strategized and planned, they’ve been frugal, upfront with supporters, and most importantly, they’ve always put animals 1st. But covid and the economic downturn is having serious and in some cases devastating effects on their programs and their funding (see more below).
In the countries where our supported organizations work, there are no safety nets for people; in difficult times, it’s always the animals that suffer most. On their behalf, we ask for your help this holiday season:
We always send 100% of your donations to our supported organizations. We tell you and show you how your donations are used; for example, with at-a-glance pie charts:
And in AKI Blog posts…………
This month’s AKI Blog has articles about 2 Africa-Based Animal Welfare Organization Grant Recipients, 1 AKI Partner Organization, and a profile of Linda Ncube, director of Humane Africa Trust, a 2021 grant recipient (in partnership with Tikobane Trust-Zimbabwe).
WAG-Rwanda goes mobile and high tech with an AKI grant! - WAG purchased a smartphone, bike, helmet, and laptop for Paci, the WAG Shelter Manager, so that he could improve animal care and welfare of cats and dogs beyond WAG’s shelter by setting up and overseeing a community network and conducting regular community visits to check on animals.
Kitties have it made; dogs do too with Kingston Community Animal Welfare - This article is about Miltie, the tiny kitty who had pneumonia when Deborah rescued her from the tennis club, and other old (like Old Girl below) and new cat and dog clients in the KCAW feeding program (feeding, spay/neuter, and vet care of street animals and pets belonging to poor people).
Photo above: Old Girl is one of about 1000 cats and dogs fed and watched over by AKI Partner Kingston Community Animal Welfare. AKI donors cover about 90% of KCAW’s operating costs.
Veterinarians for Animal Welfare Zimbabwe - Grant recipient, VAWZ, completed their grant project with a total of 63 animals sterilized and 200 vaccinated!
Photo above: The Veterinarians for Animal Welfare Zimbabwe spay/neuter van travels to rural parts of Zimbabwe where vet care is limited, sometimes even non-existent, and always beyond the means of the poor.
Humane Africa Trust’s Linda Ncube: on being an animal welfare advocate in Zimbabwe (Part 1) - Some insights into cultural views toward cats and dogs and what it’s like to be an animal advocate in a country where there are still far too few. We thought Linda’s story was so interesting, we’ll soon publish Part 2.
There’s still time to request a Pet Portrait or a holiday card of your pet (festively dressed or au natural with a holiday message of your choice). When you donate at least $12 and send a high quality photo, Joan will do her magic and after a few days, you’ll receive a downloadable portrait. For more information about Pet Portraits and holiday cards, read here. (Photo below: an example of a Pet Portrait, Damba)
Recurring Donors! PLEASE check your spam boxes (and of course your inboxes) for my end of year appreciation letter. All recurring donor letters went out on December 5. If you haven’t received yours, please let me know. If you have received it, feel free to let me know, as well.
The Uganda Society for the Protection & Care of Animals is one of those organizations that has done everything right, but between covid and the economic downturn, they’re going through one of the most difficult periods in their history (since their beginning in 1997!). After about 5 years of searching for land and raising money, this year, the USPCA finally took the huge step and now owns a 2.08 acre plot where the new Haven will be built. But we received a shock when we were told that due to a growing number of complaints from local residents about the noise, smell, and wastewater seepage at the current Haven, the move to the new location needs to take place much sooner than planned. The Kampala City Council Authority served the USPCA with an order to remove the animals from the shelter – with a deadline of January 15, 2022!
The USPCA quickly developed a comprehensive plan, list of equipment and materials needed to prepare the new plot for the arrival of the cats and dogs, and a budget-the cost: about US$35,000 (includes new infrastructure, perimeter fencing, and moving the kennels and animals). The USPCA is hoping for donations of supplies which would greatly cut the cost. But the economic downturn has made it difficult for local companies to donate items that would have been provided-with ease-in the past.
This shock came on top of the USPCA’s diminished bank account due to the departure of so many expats from the country (because of covid) and the drop in local donations (due to the resulting economic situation). An organization that has done everything right is now having trouble making ends meet.
Sauvons nos Animaux-Democratic Republic of Congo is another organization that did everything right and now finds itself in dire straits. A two-time Africa-Based Animal Welfare Organization Grant Recipient, SnA runs the only shelter (currently with about 160 dogs and 40 cats) in the huge expanse of eastern DRC. SnA had built up a dedicated group of supporters, mainly in Europe-of course there’s no possibility of raising money locally, in one of the poorest and most insecure regions on earth.
Then covid hit. AKI’s grant helped: we funded a vet and vet assistant for 6 months to spay/neuter and treat the shelter animals. But then famine struck. SnA’s donations dried up and food for the animals was scarce. Sterilization surgeries had to stop until the animals gained weight and health improved. We were able to raise a bit more money for SnA so they could purchase food -and the cats and dogs put on weight (photo above-December 18, the dogs are starting to look healthy and sterilization surgeries will begin again in January 2022).
But now it feels like SnA is moving from one emergency to the next, living hand to mouth: that just wasn’t they way Paterne (founder/director) thought it would turn out when he knew he was doing everything right.
Thank you for making an end-of-year donation - thank you for helping our fellow animal welfare advocates in poor countries.
We wish you a happy, healthy, safe holiday season. We are so grateful for your kindness, generosity, and support in 2021. We’ll have some big news for 2022, so please watch for your January AKI e-newsletter!