I travelled to Ethiopia as part of the Dr Svendsen Scholarship in November 2015 with Heather Ross and saw first hand the amazing work that is being carried out by staff and communities in this developing country. The continued dedication of the charity in numerous areas of the country, aiming to eventually reach all of Ethiopia's 7 million donkeys, inspired me to write this poem.
A future for seven million
Having worked in numerous small, rural communities around the world, I am always amazed at the generosity, hospitality and warmth extended to visitors.
A recent visit to Ethiopia was no different and I am humbled by the joy with which we were received by this small and vibrant community. Situated approximately an hour’s drive south-east of Bahir Dar in Ethiopia, we were in the small community of Feres Woga.
The Donkey Sanctuary co-sponsored the first Continental Consultative Stakeholders Conference on Animal Welfare in Africa at the African Union Inter-African Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) in Nairobi, Kenya from 30 November to 1 December 2015. The meeting brought together African representatives of the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and various NGOs to start the process of developing an African Platform for Animal Welfare. Currently, Africa is the only continent without an OIE Collaborating Centre on Animal Welfare.