June 2020: As we adapt to the new normal
As we adapt to what has become the "new normal," we've sent-and will continue to send-emergency covid-19 relief disbursements to our Partner Organizations; we adapted AKI's 2020 Africa-Based Animal Welfare Organization Grant Program to take into account covid-19 safeguards; a very generous AKI donor is holding a mask-making fundraiser to support AKI; and we continue to get the word out about how AKI-supported organizations-our Partners and Grant Recipients-rely on AKI donors more than ever to continue their work.
[Above: Paw print and dog masks} We've had an amazing offer from a kind and generous AKI supporter. Stacey is making cat, dog, paw print, and owl masks to support AKI. For US$25/mask including postage, Stacey will sew one of these special masks for you and the full cost will be donated to AKI. And you can make a positive statement about animals (and be fashionable!). Please help us keep Stacey busy sewing masks! To order or for more information, please write to me here. [The masks are reversible, they have 3 layers of cotton with a filter pocket where additional material can be added, a sewn 'sleeve' area near the bridge of the nose for a nose wire, and cotton twill ties that make for a better fit and more comfortable if wearing for a longer period of time.]
A Virtual Visit with Kingston Community Animal Welfare
In these times of restricted travel, when we can only dream of visiting new places and volunteering with animal welfare organizations in far flung locales, we hope this video will provide temporary satisfaction. It almost feels like you're with Deborah from AKI Partner Kingston Community Animal Welfare, as she rescues, feeds, and gives lots of love to animals throughout the city. THANKS GO TO ETHAN AND HIS ARTISTIC TALENT FOR CREATING THIS VIDEO!
https://www.animal-kind.org/aki-videos -watch video here
June's AKI Blog posts are about how two of our Partner Organizations are using AKI funds and about an amazing organization that is helping cats in France.
Save the Animals-Armenia working during the covid-19 pandemic - Every day, Nune feeds about 84 dogs, a little more than half at the Save the Animals-Armenia shelter, and the rest, street dogs (also some guard dogs who are mostly ignored by their owners). The cost for food for these dogs is about US$1054/month. SA-Armenia relies on AKI donors for a significant portion of this cost.
We sent Have A Heart-Namibia a covid-19 relief disbursement! - Thanks to AKI donations, we've replenished the AKI-HAH Emergency Fund, which has made these happy stories possible.
C'est la vie for cats - We're grateful to Lynn Stone, founder & director of Chats du Quercy, a French registered charity based in the Midi-Pyrénées region, for educating us about the situation for cats in France. But even more than that we're so grateful that Chats du Quercy is heroically addressing the dire treatment of so many cats in France. (Below: A kind person feeds a cat colony)
AKI's 2020 Africa-Based Animal Welfare Organization Grant Program
With 25 days remaining to submit a proposal to AKI's 2020 grant program, we've already received 11 complete applications from eligible animal welfare organizations. We're expecting many more. This year, we're asking applicants to explain how their proposed project is compliant with covid-19 safeguards and how they will adapt their plans based on changing covid-19 situations and restrictions. We've heard from so many Africa-based animal welfare organizations about the huge needs and how grateful they are that AKI decided to hold our 3rd annual grant program: One applicant wrote, "We have been following Animal-Kind projects for the last couple of years and it is really fantastic that you are continuing to sponsor grants again this year. There is so much work to do here in Africa and organisations like yours are making a huge impact on the ground." Another applicant wrote, "With many organisations and individuals no longer able to help us, we need Animal-Kind International in Africa now more than ever before." Our grant program is entirely donor-funded. We are grateful if you can support a portion or a full grant. Please get in touch if you're interested in sponsoring a grant-thank you very much!
We are continuing to update each Partner Organization page on the AKI website with the latest covid-19 info about how the restrictions are affecting them. Here are some examples:
Uganda SPCA - With restrictions on the use of private vehicles lifted, Uganda SPCA is again able to host volunteers and potential adopters. But beware the tardy visitor-if you are out after the 7 PM curfew and have to pass a roadblock, you will have to park right there and spend the night in your car! June 26 will bring an announcement about the remaining restrictions, which are expected to be lifted. The picture above is of an older dog rescued by the Uganda SPCA. The dog was left in his compound when his owner moved away. We thank a kind-heated security guard, who fed this dog even though she is terrified of dogs. We are grateful to a neighbor who called the USPCA about the dog. Of course, our gratitude goes to the USPCA team-they always go above and beyond the call of duty. And we give our thanks to AKI donors, who cover the cost of transport for Uganda SPCA rescues like this, dog food, staff salaries, and so much more. USPCA's needs never end and they have only been growing during covid-19!
Namibia's Katutura Pet Care Project is back to feeding and dipping dogs and feeding and powdering cats in Katutura, the sprawling township outside of Windhoek. We're so excited because the mobile spay/neuter clinic is in Katutura this weekend--right now(!) sterilizing cats and dogs. Katutura Pet Care Project's leader and AKI's Namibia liaison, Erika, has been working hard to get the mobile clinic to Katutura and we are grateful to Have A Heart-Namibia and Dr. Baines for making this a reality.
Ghana SPCA has been meeting virtually with potential collaborators to expand their reach once covid-19 restrictions are lifted. Some of their ideas are to open an office (a rent-free location has been identified) to better respond to requests for help from the public-most of the requests being cruelty reports, which have increased in frequency during lock down; work with District Assemblies and local vets to hold community rabies vaccination programs; and continue their work in the North East, in Greater Accra, and the Volta region of Ghana.
Kingston Community Animal Welfare is back to their usual activities-but is hard-pressed to meet all the needs that arose during the severe lock down and the ongoing downturn in the economy. More dogs and cats than ever are on the street, having to fend for themselves. More owners are requesting KCAW's help to feed their pets. More cats and dogs need to be sterilized NOW before they reproduce and contribute even further to the unwanted animal population living on the streets.
We, our Partner Organizations, and our 2020 Grant Recipients-to-be are so grateful for your continued support. On one hand, in AKI monthly newsletters, I try to get across how important your donations are to AKI-supported organizations; on the other hand, I hope I demonstrate transparency and accountability to you, our donors. While in this unprecedented time, there are more needs than ever, I will continue to work to earn your support because I know -and I hope you do too-- how crucial it is.
AKI donors support our 10 Partner Organizations in Uganda (2 partners), Tanzania, South Sudan, Namibia, Liberia, Ghana, Armenia, Jamaica, and Honduras; and AKI's Grant Program for Africa-Based Animal Welfare Organizations (2019 grant recipients are located in: Zimbabwe, Zambia, Uganda, Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Mozambique, and South Africa.)
Karen Menczer, Founder & Director
& the AKI Board