NELSON Mandela Day is fast approaching and local canine outreach programme, Edu-Paw urges the people of Amanzimtoti to continue supporting its mission in one of many simple but appreciated ways.
The lead-up to Mandela Day is often the only time of the year that thought and preparation is put into charity work. Companies, teams, friend groups and families hastily take on projects in the hope of being able to say they ‘did their part’ for Mandela Day.
Conversely, every Saturday morning Cathy Keegan and her team of devoted volunteers assist some 30 children from rural, outlying areas who take their canines to the Amanzimtoti SPCA. Many of the dogs are still puppies which have falled victim to illness, abuse and starvation.
The Edu-Paw volunteers work tirelessly to educate these enthusiastic children on how to properly care for their pets and instill love and compassion into the pet-owner relationship. Edu-Paw firmly believes ‘teaching children to be kinder to animals today is our only hope for a kinder tomorrow’.
“Every dog that comes to Edu-Paw is fed and dewormed, chains and rope are replaced with collars and leads. Some dogs are bathed and dipped. Dog shampoo and dip is available as well as blankets and dog jerseys in winter,” said founder Cathy Keegan.
Educational areas covered include basic canine care, puppy care, bathing education to prevent skin illness, primary health care including deworming, vaccinations, sterilisation, the evils of dog fighting and animal cruelty and how to show kindness and compassion and bonding with your dog. Age related isiZulu flyers with colourful images on, explaining different subjects relating to canine care, are given out to each child.
Annually, 18 July reminds us of the importance of giving back in whichever way we can. While there should be no set date or time to help anyone – human or animal – in need, local outreach organisation Edu-Paw urges the community to lend its efforts to its cause this Mandela Day.
“We ask that in the spirit of Mandela Day, individuals, companies or groups donate R67 towards the vaccinations or R670 toward the sterilisation of a township dog,” said Cathy.
Donations can be made into the following account:
Account number 053211189
Branch code 057827
Reference: Edu-Paw Appeal
Aside from Mandela Day, Edu-Paw has been running a crowdfunding campaign in the hope of raising a much-needed R20,000 towards their sterilisation costs. Unfortunately, the organisation has only seen some R700 donated to the drive. This drive could prove another excellent way to do your part this Mandela Day. More information on this can be sought at https://yofundmi.co.za/relieve-the-cruelty-and-suffering-of-township-dogs-goal-r20-000/ where donations can also be made.
Further donations of collars, leashes, food, deflea medication, raffle prizes, blankets and canine jerseys are greatly appreciated by Edu-Paw. Donations can be handed in at the Amanzimtoti SPCA’s 1 Nyati Road office and should be marked ‘EduPaw’.
Cathy further explained that in addition to the Mandela Day plea, Edu-Paw is in dire need of both a veterinary nurse and an obedience trainer to assist and volunteer on a Saturday morning.
“A prospective obedience trainer will take a class of children each week and teach them dog training techniques. The work of Adrienne Olivier, founder of Funda Nenja in Howick, is our inspiration in this objective,” explained Cathy. “A qualified veterinary nurse is needed to see to the basic medical side, as none of us are trained in this area.”
This organisation is creating great waves of change both within and outside the Amanzimtoti community. Mahatma Gandhi, who Mandela aimed to follow in the footsteps of, said: “The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated”.
Edu-Paw urges the people of Amanzimtoti to strive to create a better nation by supporting the programme’s upliftment project with canine care education of the rural areas.
Follow Edu-Paw on Facebook to keep up to date with all the amazing work being undertaken or alternatively, email founder Cathy Keegan on [email protected]
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