Dec 16, 2008
1. Providing disaster relief
WSPA’s disaster management team improved the welfare of over 195,000 animals this year, supplying desperately needed food, veterinary supplies and expertise across Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. When Myanmar and Cuba were ravaged by storms, we were the only organization able to assist their animals.
2. Campaign launched to end the long distance transportation of animals
The WSPA-led Handle with Care campaign launched across nine countries in a blaze of publicity, moving politicians and the public to call for an end to the long distance transportation of animals. One of 2008’s successes was an 11% drop in the number of pigs being transported to Hawaii from the US mainland, saving almost 2,000 animals from a horrific journey by land and sea.
3. Working to end bear baiting
In 2008 we moved closer to ending bear baiting in Pakistan for good: 15 bears were rescued from the danger and pain of illegal baiting and taken to Kund Park. At this WSPA-funded lifetime care facility they received expert veterinary treatment and can now rest in the pools and long grass of the sanctuary.
4. Building our network of member societies
We are building a global animal welfare movement by collaborating with, funding and sharing learning with our member societies. Over 130 groups, including 15 in the US, joined our network in 2008, allowing WSPA to work with local organizations in Cambodia, Myanmar, Guam, Palau, Kosovo and Palestine for the first time.
5. Making animal-friendly food choices
We launched an “Eat Humane” campaign in the US by ranking the largest supermarket chains on the availability of humanely raised foods in their stores. American shoppers now have a guide to food labels and where to shop to find the most animal-friendly products.
6. Scoring a victory for whales
WSPA scored a victory for whales this year. At the 2008 International Whaling Commission meeting we proved that ‘aboriginal’ hunts in Greenland also turn a commercial profit, giving commissioners the information they needed to block the country’s plans to hunt humpback whales.
7. Promoting the Model Farm Project
In 2008 the Model Farm Project took off in China: 10,000 chickens that would have been caged have experienced life outside, climbed trees and basked in the sun. This project has benefited humans too: shoppers in Beijing are now able to buy humanely reared chickens and eggs for the first time.
8. Providing for sanctuaries
Rescue and rehabilitation work continued in 2008, with the Romanian bear sanctuary’s new enclosure providing life-long safety for nine more abused and neglected bears. Our funding also kept the Borneo Orangutan Survival Foundation’s forest sanctuary open to care for injured and orphaned animals.
9. Collaborating with international animal welfare organizations
WSPA USA hosted the first Global Outreach Round Table to explore ways to create effective long distance collaborations and partnerships between US and oversees member societies. US organizations are offering resources and expertise to assist their colleagues abroad with the day-to-day challenges they face in helping animals.
10. Promoting a Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare
In 2008, the governments of Sweden, New Zealand, Fiji, the Seychelles and Cambodia all made animal welfare an issue of national importance by supporting WSPA’s campaign for a Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare. In the US, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) expressed support for the UDAW concept.
11. Continuing work with companion animals
Our work with companion animals and their owners spans four continents. In 2008, this reach helped WSPA and our partners secure the long-term safety of thousands of dogs: we convinced government authorities in Colombia, Sierra Leone and Sri Lanka to give up cruel methods of stray control and commit to humane ways of managing local dog populations.
12. Briefing on animal welfare at United Nations
To highlight the links between animal welfare, food security, the environment and human livelihoods, WSPA briefed the ambassadors of 41 developing countries on how good animal welfare can benefit the world’s poorest people. From 2009, we will encourage them to be active in calling for a Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare.
13. Canada passes legislation to protect animals
In Canada, lobbying activity by WSPA and member society the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals resulted in strong new legislation to protect animals. Animal care standards were established in law for the first time, with greater powers granted to SPCA officers and serious penalties for those who commit animal cruelty.