UNDP touts our roaming dog work in regional summit

I work to help communities develop their own plans to take care of their doggy companions, particularly in places where dogs are free-roaming.

Stopping the flow of suffering animals means wading upstream and plugging the source, and of course the source is most often, in one way or another, people.

So I work with people, listening to their problems, facilitating discussions and helping them get to a shared vision of how they want dogs to fit in their community and strategies to get there, in ways that they can afford to maintain in the long-run.

After the implementation of Lopare’s Humane Community Development in May, the Mayor called our cell to thank us, saying that our work had brought the community together and united them behind a unified vision in way that they hadn’t for many years.

He said we had brought ‘sunshine and light’ to his corner of Bosnia.

Our work in Bosnia falls under the UNDP’s Security Sector. Recently, sector leader Amela Cosovic presented it to the UNDP Europe and Central Asia Regional Bureau meeting.

As she talked about the power of our Humane Community Development approach to improve the lives of dogs AND people, she used the analogy of the Mostar Bridge, one of Bosnia’s most beautiful and historic icons. She said that Mostar is a city still divided, but that dogs aren’t afraid to cross that bridge.

Her presentation on our joint work got rousing applause from the UNDP management.

Amela then spent time talking to representatives from Macedonia and Serbia who would like to do this kind of work in their countries.

The UNDP use ‘development’ language, of course.  They are interested in ‘social capital’, ‘resilience’ and ‘empowerment’.  It is very affirming that they see dogs and our Humane Community Development process as vehicles to reach those goals.



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