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ISSUE NO. 01 DECEMBER 20216 Rescue PioneersWritten by: Keagan Mattison C.A.R.E.Established in 1989 by primate conservation and rehabilitation pioneer, Rita Miljo. C.A.R.E. has pioneered in wildlife rehabilitation and the release of Chacma baboons. Chacma baboons (P. ursinus) are the largest members of the monkey family and are a highly social species. Chacma baboons are not listed as threatened or endangered.
However, populations within the Cape Peninsula are considered to be potentially threatened and should be monitored and protected. C.A.R.E.'s Managing Director Stephen Munro, has over 15 year’s experience in primate rehabilitation and release, he and his partner Samantha Dewhirst, make an industrious, passionate and experienced duo, completely dedicated to the rescue, welfare, conservation and release of South Africa's wildlife; especially their beloved baboons! Owl Rescue CentreRealising that there was a rapid decline in owl numbers and that owls had become one of the most common wildlife casualties brought into veterinary practices, Brendan Murray and his wife, Danelle, decided ten years ago to focus all their efforts on conserving them.
The organisation they founded, Owl Rescue Centre, is based at Hartbeespoort in the North West Province, and now takes in more than a thousand owls every year through their rescue efforts. The owls are rehabilitated and when they can survive on their own in the wild, are released in the sanctuary – a farm which is located within a 12 000 hectare conservancy. Woodrock Animal RescueWoodrock Animal Rescue was founded in 1992 by Nicholas and Stella (Estelle) Meldau, whose focus, passion and drive made their animal rescue vision become a reality.
The rescue centre originated in the Johannesburg suburban areas of Woodmead and Khyber Rock, hence the name Woodrock. Woodrock Animal Rescue is now based on 8.5 hectares in the beautiful Hennops River Valley, South-West of Pretoria. Woodrock Animal Rescue is one of the oldest, independent, non-profit, pro-life domestic animal rescue centres in South Africa who stand firmly by their ethos of education and sterilisation. They assist homeless, abused, neglected, stray, injured, ill, geriatric and unwanted animals by providing happy, warm enclosures that ensure each rescue has the best opportunity for a second chance at a life they deserve.
They take ACTA NON VERBA to new heights. EnviroVet CVCWith the goal of providing veterinary services to animals living in impoverished communities around the country, SAVA-CVC was established in 1998.
Dr Roos followed suit by creating EnviroVet CVC in 2011 and has since brought together a strong team of dedicated individuals working to protect domestic animals belonging to those who cannot afford or access private veterinary clinics. Their primary focus is on communities in Cape Town, but mostly in the smaller towns across the Western- and Northern Cape, where no other veterinary services are available, providing a variety of essential services to guarantee the well-being of these helpless creatures. Notably, EnviroVet CVC has performed more than 60 000 pet sterilisations over the last decade. EnviroVet CVC focuses on the well-being primarily of dogs, cats and donkeys, and whilst sterilisation projects come first and foremost, Dr Roos and her team conduct many other critical services such as vaccinations, dipping, deworming, treatment of mange and TVT.
A central element to the formidable work undertaken by her team is education. This means providing as much information and training as possible during their work in remote or impoverished areas. For this reason, they do not simply remove animals, perform sterilisations and then return them. EnviroVet group knows the majority of the animals individually, are aware of their circumstances, and beginning with the basic necessities of giving a pet a name, teaching people to respect their pets and showing them how to treat them with love. SANParks Veterinary Wildlife ServicesDedicated heroes and prominent figures, Dr Peter Buss who is the Veterinary Senior Manager of the Veterinary Unit for the Veterinary Wildlife Services in the world famous Kruger National Park and Dr David Zimmermann, the Veterinarian Senior Manager of the Veterinary Wildlife Services for SANParks (South African National Parks) regularly express their principal concerns regarding the maintenance of animal populations, which includes the relocation of specific species – when they overpopulate a particular park – to other areas where their numbers are lower or diminishing. This is an incredibly complicated and delicate process.
Dr Buss commented that this is not a common occurrence in the enormous Kruger National Park, and that for his team, the most critical focus of their daily work is to provide veterinary support in the fight against poaching. Where possible and without interfering in the course of nature – this includes treating injured rhinos, recovery and care of orphaned rhino calves, and removal of life-threatening snares, a growing problem, from a variety of species. They also spend a lot of time on “veterinary-themed research projects”, tourist protection measures (which can include removing dangerous animals from tourist camps), disease monitoring as well as educational programmes and mentoring for veterinary students. He added that though it is never easy to assess with certainty, there has been a notable level of success in the protection of the rhino, an emblematic creature in the struggle to stop its demise caused by the illegal trade of rhino horn.
On the front line these ‘Wilderness Warriors’ have the enormous responsibility of seeking to maintain the fragile balance of nature in the many breathtaking parks and reserves for which South Africa is so famous. The Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital (RCWMCH)Child injuries are becoming a global health crisis. Approximately 80% of child injuries occur in or around the home. The Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital (RCWMCH) annually treats approximately 7 500 children for injuries which are preventable.
For every child death as a result of injury, many more are hospitalised, hundreds of emergency department visits and thousands of clinic and doctors’ visits. Many children surviving their injuries sustain temporary or permanent, life changing disabilities.
There is little focus on these injuries despite injury being the number one killer of young children in our communities in South Africa. ChildSafe, an injury prevention unit based at the Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital is a non-profit organisation that aims to reduce and prevent injuries of children through research, education and recommendations to legislation. They work with other non-profits, government, corporates, and communities to achieve this. Their core focus though is the prevention of unintentional injuries that are usually regarded as accidents, such as burns, falls, drowning, road traffic crashes, choking and poisoning.