By Haddenham Webteam - 25th October 2013 5:00pm
Most Haddenham residents are familiar with the work of Tiggywinkles, our local and much admired wildlife hospital located in Aston Road. Its founder Les Stocker and his colleagues do a terrific job, but they are not the only Haddenham folk with a desire to help animals in need.
The following is an account from Nicky Stevens, founder of the charity IAPWA (International Aid for the Protection & Welfare of Animals).
My name is Nicky Stevens and I live in Haddenham. 4 years ago I visited Borneo, Malaysia on holiday with a friend Lynsey Gill and found a dog injured in the rainforest. There was no veterinary care available in the area and as the trip progressed it became clear that the dog was one of thousands of strays that all struggle for survival on a daily basis. When we came home we couldn't forget the image of the dog needing help and none being available and so we flew back out to Borneo to meet with a small team of animal lovers who were doing their best to care for some of the animals to see how we could help them.
Since then, we have set up a UK based registered charity called IAPWA (International Aid for the Protection & Welfare of Animals) and have worked with this team to design and build an animal welfare sanctuary for them that cares for many dogs and cats that are rescued from the streets in horrendous condition so as they can be nursed back to health and then re-homed to loving families.
Although this dealt with the short term problems we witnessed, we also wanted to develop a long term solution and so we started researching how to deal with overpopulation of stray dogs and cats worldwide and found a concept called TNR which stands for Trap Neuter and Release. After studying this we flew out to India to spend some time on a project there to learn how this works so as we could establish this in Borneo to prevent thousands of puppies and kittens from being born to suffer on the streets.
Last month we met with the government in Borneo and have been campaigning since we were set up to stop dogs being killed inhumanely as a method of population control. We presented to them on our ideas and have now been awarded management of the dog pound in the city so as we can start our project. Up until this point we have still been neutering animals and providing them with veterinary care but this project will allow us to go from helping hundreds of animals to many thousands and will become the replacement for current methods of population control, saving thousands of animals.
We made front page news across Malaysia last week for this being the first project of its size to be launched throughout the country. The wildlife department are also working with us so as our veterinary volunteers have the opportunity to work on some really exciting projects involving orangutans and other species endemic to Borneo.
We now have facilities to enable us to start our project on a much larger scale and so are currently trying to raise the money needed to buy the equipment and drugs needed to be able to start this. We are also running a veterinary training school to improve standards of care within the industry and after our last trip new animal welfare laws are also being drafted to protect animals in need. Everyone in the IAPWA team works voluntarily including our veterinary team and so every penny that is donated makes a big difference to animals in need.
We have set up a justgiving page to raise funds and are also looking for animal lovers in Haddenham and further afield in Buckinghamshire who would like to join IAPWA Buckinghamshire and help us to achieve something amazing in a country where the dogs and cats have suffered for too long.
If you would like more information or to join the team, please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org,