July 25, 2008
A Friend in Need Deserves USPCA, Indeed
By Alex Gittelson
Since 1998, the Uganda Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (USPCA) has existed as an uplifting African NGO that has been instrumental in HSI's development of East Africa's awareness of animal welfare issues. The group has helped an unprecedented number of animals in Uganda, providing groundbreaking educational tools for children to take home to their families and adopting out around 90 dogs per year.
Today, HSI sponsors USPCA's emergency call center, which receives an average of six calls per day regarding animal abuse, abandonment, adoption and everything in between.
A call for help is answered
USPCA has encountered many hardships along the way, but stories about animals such as Puppy and Officer tug at staff's heartstrings and urge this courageous group's daunting work on.
As "village dogs," Puppy and Officer belong to a very tightly knit community in Uganda. They are fed and cared for by the local people, in exchange for what some would call "protection." Puppy and Officer take their job very seriously and bark at any intruders, warning the community members of any possible cause for alarm.
One unfortunate day, Puppy and Officer both fell ill. Many Ugandan communities, including Puppy and Officer's, cannot afford medical treatment for themselves, let alone veterinary care, and, although everyone wanted to help, not much could be done. As the situation began to grow hopeless, a friendly passer-by who knew about USPCA's emergency call center offered to place that very important call. In a flash, USPCA was on the scene.
USPCA acted very quickly and was able to successfully treat these furry friends whose outlook had been grim just days earlier. Puppy and Officer recovered quickly, and, a few months later, were back in action! "The people were amazed and grateful that the dogs recovered but also that there is an organization that could help them!" says Katia Ruiz Allard, vice chairperson for USPCA.
HSI supporters directly help many animals such as Puppy and Officer, and HSI is very grateful for the work USPCA accomplishes every day.
HSI has been proud to call USPCA an HSI Animal Advocate since 2003.