Pwani Animal Welfare (PAW) in Mombasa, Kenya received an AKI Africa-Based Animal Welfare Organization Grant for their project, "Providing safe living quarters for rescued stray cats and dogs."
Nusrat Mohammed, Founder & Director of PAW, explained their work and primary challenge: "We had most resistance within the predominantly Islamic community in our advocacy against cruelty and violence towards dogs and demystifying the notion that dogs are impure in Islam. This has however changed since 2021 where a lot more Muslims in the community are becoming more informed due to the Pwani Animal Welfare community advocacy forums on kindness to dogs."
Nusrat continued, "Pwani Animal Welfare has been working towards rescuing a lot of stray cats and dogs, concentrating mostly on sick, injured or special needs, most are in need of health care and on the verge of death or extremely suffering on the streets. Among Pwani's goals, we work for a community that has population control of its stray cats and dogs and a substantial reduction of rabid animals."
Pwani's grant project supported the construction of three cat units and one spay/neuter holding unit for a total of 22 cages and construction of a dog kennel that can fit up to eight puppies or three adult dogs. The cat units and dog kennels were to be placed at PAW's center of operations.
Work on the cat cages began first, starting in September. Fabrication of the spay/neuter holding unit was done off-site at the blacksmith's workshop since the unit is made of metal, a lot of electricity was required, and the work was very noisy.
In October, Pwani reported that the blacksmith completed the spay/neuter holding unit and the next step was for Pwani to put the final touches on and paint the unit.
In November, three cat cages to be used as homes for Pwani's rescues were completed and installed in Pwani's new outdoor cattery.
In December, the festive season, the work was on hold. But PAW's newsletter was sent out making note of the AKI grant:
Construction of the dog kennel resumed in January and it was completed in February:
Reflecting on the grant project, Nusrat said that, "Due to the AKI grant we are definitely able to offer more space to rescues. Since we completed the cat cages, we’ve been able to utilize them and they have been a safe haven for the rescues. Especially new rescues, they can hide in the individual spaces and we place the food in their “balcony space” which reduces their stress levels and they can join the rest when they feel comfortable. They also use the cages to protect themselves from any unwanted curiosity or attention from the resident rescues."
About PAW's plans for the future, Nusrat said, "We are always looking to expand and provide a much bigger space for the rescue cats and dogs. Hence, apart from the kennel wall, we’ve built everything else to be mobile and easy to disassemble and assemble again somewhere else."
During the grant project time period, PAW shifted to a new location. These are pictures of their previous facilities: