Animals Bring Hope To Poverty Areas In South Africa
The Mzdananda page on IFAW's website opens with this:
"There’s a wide school of thought that somehow believes poor people shouldn’t own pets."
Think again. This perception will change after meeting the clients of Mdzananda Animal Clinic, a Community Led Animal Welfare project of IFAW in South Africa. They are the only daily service offering primary vet care to dogs and cats in Cape Town’s most populous settlement.
Mdzananda provides services such as dipping and sterilization to the villages of Khayalitsha; home to at least one million people. Khayalitsha is a sprawling mix of shantytown and low cost government subsidized housing on what is known as the Cape Flats on the periphery of Cape Town, South Africa.
The government is unable to keep up with the growing demand for housing and services, and HIV/AIDS is continuing to take its toll on the poor. In many areas, CLAW (Community Led Animal Welfare) is the only welfare service that is contactable and reliable, and our approach has of necessity become more holistic than other animal welfare organisations. - IFAW's Cora Bailey, founder of CLAW (Community Led Animal Welfare) projects in South Africa and who continues to be their voice of the future.
Pets are not allowed to travel on public transportation, and private vehicles are next to none. Therefore, clients of the Mdzananda Animal Clinic come up with many creative ways of transporting their pets so that they can receive treatment. In the slide show below is a photo of a visitor who brings his whippet-type dogs in for treatment regularly. One of his dogs is crippled in the front legs and cannot walk, so the owner transports him in a baby stroller.
In March alone, Mdzananda treated 259 sick dogs at the clinic. A further 727 dogs were treat at it's mobile outreach clinics. In total 123 dogs were sterilized.
Here are some images from this past month where pet owners brought in their companions for treatment: