India is the second largest producer of clay-fired bricks, accounting for more than 10 percent of global production. There are approximately 100,000 brick kilns across the country, employing around 10 million people. Conditions are harsh for everyone. Families are poorly paid and there is typically a lack of basic facilities, such as access to regular clean drinking water and sanitation.
The donkeys working at the kilns suffer from serious welfare issues resulting from overloading, beatings, and other harmful handling, poor food and harness. Tethering and hobbling using plastic strings can add to their misery. Much of this stems from poor communication between donkey and owner.
Funded by The Donkey Sanctuary, the Donkey Sanctuary India work to encourage better communication between donkey and human at the brick kilns, including reaching out to the many children who work with donkeys every day.
The following video shows some of the work The Donkey Sanctuary is doing with donkey handlers at the kilns and the difference being made to the donkeys’ lives. It contains strong images.