Training and Outreach
Training and outreach services constitute an important area that JRAWS considers necessary in enhancing necessary skills in providing an effective and efficient service to the animals. The training and outreach initiative have several stakeholders like professionals, civic staff, volunteers, people and others, at different layers of functions, needed for an integrated approach for a sustainable and affirmative action, for greater impact.
We are thus active participants of several training programs and workshops, to enhance skill sets of our personal and to acquire the latest know how in animal welfare activities. As well, we initiated in a small measure, the following training programs, independently as well as, several like-minded organizations, government departments, and civic bodies.
JRAWS had participated and provided necessary training to the staff of civic bodies, in human dog catching. The main aim is to lessen the pain in the process of catching dogs,for either administering vaccination under ARV or for the purpose of the ABC program.
Humane Dog Catching: Stressing the need to lessen the pain in the process of dog catching for ARV, the Animal Welfare Board of India, Commissioner and Director of Municipal Administration, Government of AP, and Blue Cross of Hyderabad had initiated Humane Dog Catching training for sanitary workers in the two municipal corporations in the district, i.e., Rajahmundry and Kakinada.
Humane dog catching and ARV was also recognised by other civic bodies in the district as their statutory obligation and better way of handling the rabies problem. Thus, workers of seven municipalities and 1248 villages in the district are given training in humane dog catching. JRAWS in the forefront in successfully conducting this program with much of inspiration needed to make this program a success has come from Smt. Amala Akkineni, Found, Blue Cross of Hyderabad. Now, all almost all the civic bodies and villages in the district are having trained resource in Humane Dog Capture and Handling.
Training for Veterinary Doctors: Three years of our efforts started yielding results in creating healthy environment for animals. JRAWS could make its presence felt in various quarters in our city, district, among animal lovers, professionals, civic bodies and administration and government functionaries. This we could do involving people from different walks of life in society. Adding to this, the Veterinary Council of Andhra Pradesh, Animal Husbandry Department, Government of Andhra Pradesh, Rajahmundry Municipal Corporation and JRAWS conducted a training program for veterinary doctors in the district at our ABC/AR Facility.
The three-day training program was to train veterinary doctors in Animal Birth Control Operations. Doctors from JRAWS (trained at ITC, Ooty) , Central Dog Pond, Hyderabad Municipal Corporation and Animal Husbandry Department, Government of Andhra Pradesh had trained the participants in the program.
The Registrar and Secretary of Veterinary Council of Andhra Pradesh had inaugurated the training program. The participants were given training certificates by the chairman of Veterinary Council of Andhra Pradesh, attended by the co-opted member of Animal Welfare Board of India, and commissioner of the Rajahmundry Municipal Corporation,and Founder-JRAWS.
Training for Youth and Children Top
JRAWS Training for Youth and Children (TYC) is an important part of its outreach programs, to create awareness among children and young people. Our focus is to make sure that compassionate thinking and an affirmative action, from the early days of life, of people would go a long way, in securing a positive disposition towards animals living along with us in our eco-system.
Our Little Angels program is a way through which we interact with children to create awareness among children about the importance of co-existence with other living beings in our habitat. In the wake of polarized perceptions, in 2007, we initiated this program, in different schools in the city, asking them 'Whether, Dog is a Friend or Foe? Our focus was not only to create a positive thinking, but also which will have a practical bearing. Thus, this program had covered: How to understand a dog's behaviour? What are our actions that could provoke a dog? How to keep up a positive disposition towards a street dog? What is a dog bite? What is rabies? What to do and don't, when a dog bites? How important it is to visit a doctor in case of a dog bite. What is anti rabies vaccination and its importance? Places where anti dots vaccination for dog bites is available free of cost? A question and answer session is a must in each of such event. We always ensured that a health official is present, to respond to the curious questions of our little angels.
Encouraged with the successful conduct of events for children, we, at JRAWS are working to further improve upon this program, in the days to come. Also, while observing World Rabies Day, Zoonosis Day,Animal Welfare Fortnight, Environmental Day, we make sure their participation to keep up the momentum of their interest towards animal protection.
Young Brigades was the first program initiated by us in rural areas, to create awareness about Anti Rabies Vaccination among people.
The Young Volunteers, first moving around the villages, calls people for an informal meeting. The venue is a village temple, 'Raccha Banda', where they usually assemble to discuss any issues in the village.
On assemblage of villagers, the student volunteers present skits in the local idiom, to convey the message. This is further followed up with door-to-door campaigns, or in any other effective form of action, finalized, along with the local officials, village elders and other prominent persons in the village. This way, we involve young people in promoting the message for protection of animals and importance of anti rabies vaccination. At the same time, the team also records, if any one sells herbal or any other medicines to people for post dog bite treatment. In all such cases, we convince such venders to stop offering any such medicines and encourage dog bite victims to go for ARV, and tell the incident, to the local civic body.
We started this program though different channels , involving young people of National Service Scheme, Youth Clubs, forming informal groups, volunteers etc.,.. This program aims to involve young people at college level in promoting animal protection and welfare in this part of the country. Thus, we wish to make sure that when once students are leaving the school level of their education would continue to interact and keep up their interest in the areas of animal protection and welfare. Students of different colleges in the city are enthusiastic participants in our programs of the World Anti Rabies Day, Zoonosis Day, Environmental Day and several other events on animal welfare, the environment, and human health. In the days ahead, we have charted out several programs, mainly to scale up the levels of participation, of young people in the areas of animal protection and animal welfare activities in the district.
Community Services Top
Community Training is a program to create general awareness among people about the issues as and when they are happening. We felt the need on careful assessment, when people were getting agitated about street dogs, in the aftermath of rabies deaths. People's perceptions were generally getting polarized towards an immediate action, like killing dogs alone is the remedy. And, situation in which when people are in the grip of fear or panic, would pose complex situations to the animal activists. Particularly, when asked to say, whether human or animal is important? No answer perhaps, would satisfy them, but an immediate action, even if it could not address the real issue.
This was the main force behind pro-actively killing dogs by civic bodies. We could see that pressure on the officials, workers in civic bodies, local people's representatives had forced them to sail along with the moods of the situation, even such when such action is violation of rules and laws in force.
But, JRAWS wanted to take the situation as an opportunity to intensify its field activities along with the Rajahmundry Municipal Corporation, and several benevolent hands of compassionate people to dispel the fears of the people and cynicism toward rolling out the Mass Anti Rabies Vaccination program.
Despite several hiccups in the first stages of our program, we continue to pursue people explaining and informing them along with our field activity of ARV program. Hence, by combining the ARV program with community awareness has given rich dividends in successful implementation of ARV in Rajahmundry Municipal Corporation area, and the periphery rural areas of the corporation limits. Our experience gives us confidence to claim that the animal welfare activity would succeed in good measure, when field activities like ARV have community participation.
Outreach Programs Top
JRAWS outreach programs have a twofold aim: While we take part and learn from others, we are equally enthusiastic and committed to sharing what we know with others. This two-way affirmative action, we think, would benefit to improve serving to the cause of animals. Thus, we like to share and work with other like-minded people, organizations, civic and government bodies, professional associations. JRAWS believe that such sharing of knowledge and practices would further strengthen the cause of promoting a compassionate human action towards animals in our eco-system.
Workshop for Private Medical Practitioner (PMP): Private Medical practitioner's (PMP) plays an important role in providing treatment to the poor in the urban as well as surrounding rural areas of Rajahmundry. They at the lowest rung of the health network (above the health workers and assistants), accessible to the people in their vicinity. On several occasions, they are the first point of contact by residents like daily wage earners, small vendors, workers in small shops and like, for treatment. They refer the cases that they cannot handle, either to government or private hospitals in the city. Recognizing their role, JRAWS, for the first time, had conducted a workshop for them, on how to go about when a dog bite cases have come to their notice.
The workshop covered the following topics:
- Identification of Rabies Dog Bite.
- First Aid.
- Reporting the dog bite cases came to their notice, to the Rajahmundry Municipal Corporation and JRAWS for necessary action.
- Importance of post rabies bite vaccination and IG.
- Referring the suspected rabies bite patients to the First Referral Unit (FRU) Hospital, Rajahmundry Municipal Corporation, for accessing free vaccination.
JRAWS main aim of this initiative is to: