Working Equine Outreach Programme

Animal NepalWhat We DoWorking Equine Outreach Programme

BACKGROUND OF THE PROGRAM

Equine outreach programme is a holistic approach to reach out to working equines (specifically donkeys and mules) and several key stakeholders such as kiln owners, middle man (Naike), equine owners, equine handlers, local vet practitioner and related government agencies.

The programme aims to improve the working and living condition of working equines by educating and empowering key stakeholders, as well as regulating the condition of working equines. One of the major activity within the programme is community education of equine owners, handlers and kiln owners.

The programme aims to improve the working and living condition of working equines by educating and empowering key stakeholders, as well as regulating the condition of working equines. One of the major activity within the programme is community education of equine owners, handlers and kiln owners. The programme provides them with much needed trainings and awareness to empower the community and to insure realization of their responsibility towards working equines. Government line agencies also play a huge role in the welfare conditions of working equines; they have the authority to draft and adopt relevant regulations, guidelines and policies. It is part of our advocacy programme to lobby with these specific stakeholders for the betterment of the welfare conditions of working equines and in 2016 AN was part of the Committee that was formed to draft a law for the welfare of equines and other pack animals.

In 2017, we were able to lobby with the Government to pass the landmark Animal Welfare Directive; the first law in the world specifically drafted for the welfare of traction and pack animals. We hope to set an example by supporting the Government to ensure implementation of this law in the coming years and have signed an MOU with the relevant Ministry to guarantee that AN will be leading partner in the implementation process.

Location – Laltipur, Dhading, Gorkha and Nepalgunj.
Time Frame January – September 2018

Shocked to see the conditions of thousands of donkeys, mules and horses working in the brick factories of Kathmandu Valley, Animal Nepal (AN) launched a Working Equine Outreach Programme in 2009. Since then, with the support of The Donkey Sanctuary UK, AN has been working in over 15 brick factories in Lalitpur (seasonal industry running for 6 months every year), where it organizes regular health camps and educates the equine owners, handlers and factory owners on equine welfare. The condition of the 500 or so working equines in the 15 brick factories in Lalitpur has improved considerably with 55% decrease in wounds over a 5 year working period (Annual Report 2015-2016). Animal Nepal was the first animal welfare organization to work in the brick kilns of Nepal and our work continues to expand. In 2012, the outreach programme was extended to Nepalgunj- Nepal’s main equine bazaar, to address the root causes of the abuse and make a lasting change in the lives of Nepal’s working equines and their owners. In 2016, AN expanded its Outreach programme to Dhading, Kavre and Gorkha districts of Nepal. In the same year AN decided to focus more on advocacy and since has worked closely with the Ministry of Livestock Development.

In addition to the equine welfare education workshops, AN also provides skill based training for the equine owners and their families to enhance their economic situation. This undertaking was carried out while extending AN’s outreach programme to Nepalgunj- Nepal’s main equine bazaar (as well as home for most equine owners coming to Lalitpur). Animal Nepal was the first animal welfare organization to work in the brick-kilns of Nepal and our work continues to expand.

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