In November 2006 the men of Kilo Company of 42 Commando Royal Marines arrived in the war-torn town of 'Now Zad' in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. Their mission; provide stability for the local people during a period of ever decreasing security. The Royal Marines soon realised that it wasn't only the local people that needed their help. Many of the stray dogs that roamed the town of 'Now Zad' now had a guardian for the first time in their lives; in the form of Royal Marine Sergeant 'Pen' Farthing. Breaking up an organised dog fight that was taking place right outside their remote compound, Pen never realised that one of those fighting dogs would then befriend him. ... read more In November 2006 the men of Kilo Company of 42 Commando Royal Marines arrived in the war-torn town of 'Now Zad' in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. Their mission; provide stability for the local people during a period of ever decreasing security. The Royal Marines soon realised that it wasn't only the local people that needed their help. Many of the stray dogs that roamed the town of 'Now Zad' now had a guardian for the first time in their lives; in the form of Royal Marine Sergeant 'Pen' Farthing. Breaking up an organised dog fight that was taking place right outside their remote compound, Pen never realised that one of those fighting dogs would then befriend him. The Royal Marine Sergeant couldn't say no to those big sad eyes and the now former fighting dog became the Sergeant's battle buddy. The dog received his first ever name - "Nowzad". Nowzad's Mission Statement is: 'To relieve the suffering of animals in Afghanistan; including companion animals, working equines, stray and abandoned dogs and cats and all other animals in need of care and attention, and to provide and maintain rescue, rehabilitation and education facilities for the care and treatment of such animals with no voice but ours'. Reuniting Soldiers with their Battle Buddies Often when brave men and women are serving in a war zone they find themselves adopting one of the many stray dogs or cats that are struggling to survive there. Who rescued who? These soldiers are not only a salvation for the animal; the dog or cat are often described as 'lifelines' to their soldier, providing a respite from war, a moment of peace, home and love. When the soldier's tour of duty comes to an end, it is unthinkable to leave their four-legged comrade that they've bonded with, behind. This is where we step in, we arrange for the animal to get to the safety of the Nowzad clinic, we then provide shelter for the animal as well as vaccinations. We also spay/neuter all rescues and provide any required medical attention. Then, we carry out all necessary checks and paperwork to get the dog or cat to their loving forever home - wherever it is in the world. Our amazing family of supporters never cease to amaze us how they rally to reach the target necessary to get the much loved dog or cat home to their new life. Warzone Rescues: Afghanistan, Iraq, Ukraine, Libya and Syria Homecomings: USA, UK, Australia, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Holland, Italy, Spain, Jordan Thailand and South Africa. To date we are proud to say that we have reunited over 1400 dogs or cats with the compassionate soldiers that have rescued them. The Nowzad Shelter Our well designed and purpose built shelter in Kabul provides a safe home for over 140 dogs. We also have a purpose built cat shelter housing over 40 rescue cats. The Nowzad shelter is the first and only official shelter of its kind in the whole of Afghanistan. Normal dog food brands that you could buy in the west are often hard to come by in Afghanistan and so we feed our dogs daily with a soup of rice, naan bread, meat, carrots and potatoes. The dogs are also exercised in purpose built dog runs and both dogs and cats have enrichment provided. Our Afghan staff take great personal pride in the welfare of all the animals in our care and some have adopted dogs of their own!. Daily health checks are carried out by our highly qualified Afghan veterinarians and any necessary treatment is carried out immediately as required. Our aim is to re-home all of the dogs and cats that end up in our shelter; firstly to loving homes in Afghanistan where we have had great success, or for those who have already been fostered or cared for by ex-pats living in Kabul, we aim to rehome them in the west. We pay our Afghan staff wages that are considered generous for the sector of work they do (typically they earn just $350-$400 a month for extremely long hours in very harsh conditions). The funding requirements for the upkeep of the shelter and facilities and to make sure we have the ability to provide any medical care that our animals may need, are ongoing and very much needed. Dog and Cat Adoptions Our main priority is to re-home dogs and cats from our shelter in Kabul with caring homes in Afghanistan and we are so proud to say that we have had an increase in local Afghan people coming to Nowzad to offer a loving home to our rescues. We are also extremely happy to match our deserving rescues with those willing to provide them with a loving home in the UK or USA. Each animal we import is spayed/neutered, vaccinated and microchipped and we provide long term support to the adoptee should their circumstances change and they can no longer keep the animal. The cost of adopting a dog from Nowzad in the UK is 4000 and the cost of adopting a cat is 2500 and Nowzad will provide fundraising assistance with this. Nowzad makes no money off these fees, sadly that is the cost of travel and all required tests and administration. The Nowzad Donkey Sanctuary Nowzad also operates the first and only donkey/horse sanctuary in Afghanistan. It is the refuge for former working donkeys and horses who have been discarded like rubbish onto the streets when they are no longer able to carry the heavy loads demanded of them by their owners. Currently, at the Nowzad Donkey Sanctuary in Kabul we have six rescue donkeys; Rosie, Kushi, Jalala, Demazang, Shahzada, Maqbula and Azad, our first rescued horse. Working donkeys and horses are the life blood of the local communities in Afghanistan and Kabul is by no means an exception. Where old meets new in the city; many families have access to motor transportation whilst many more, particularly those who inhabit the surrounding mountains, do not. The working donkey or horse is vital to carry supplies (water, food and building materials) to the outlying villages; including most of Kabul's surrounding urban areas that are built on the side of the unforgiving mountain terrain. These poor animals more often than not, are over-worked and under-cared for. Through no fault of their own, their owners have been left with a limited knowledge on the fundamental needs of their donkeys to ease working conditions and improve their welfare. Nowzad promotes healthy Afghan donkey ownership through effective mobile 'pop-up' workshop to educate local Afghan muleteers about the importance of basic health checks for their donkey along with feeding requirements and necessary vaccinations. Importantly, we employ a farrier to relieve donkeys of painful and uncomfortable hooves, a small gesture that makes a big difference to the donkey's quality of life. All donkeys that pass through our workshops are recorded to help us keep track of their progress. Our veterinarians are fully qualified and experienced in tending to any donkey or horse that is sick or injured and we often offer 'roadside assistance' or out-patient calls to animals in distress. TNVR (Trap, Neuter, Vaccinate, Return) Did you know that it is not only dogs that our TNVR program is focused on, but cats too? For the past 10 years Nowzad has spearheaded a campaign to reduce the large numbers of unwanted animals born to a harsh life on the streets of Kabul. The animals often suffer from disease, injury, starvation and cruelty. Despite very limited resources our humane TNVR program is ongoing and has been proved to effectively reduce the animal population and the incidence of disease - many cases of cruelty arise from the understandable fear of rabies. We also vaccinate all cats and dogs that visit the Nowzad clinic against rabies free of charge. Our vets are kept constantly busy treating, neutering and vaccinating animals. We are still very much involved with humanely controlling the stray cats at the US and UK embassies and the Coalition Headquarters in Kabul and often receive a message to let us know that one of our humane traps has caught another 'volunteer' for our neutering scheme! It is often a happy ending for the captured cats as once returned they are more than likely befriended by one of the embassy staff and find themselves being transported to their new forever home either in the UK or USA. Spaying and neutering makes a huge impact. Just one unspayed female dog and her offspring can produce 67,000 puppies in only six years! In seven years, one female cat and her offspring can produce a whopping 370,000 kittens! In 2019 Nowzad will be launching a ground breaking program that will involve carrying out an extensive TNVR campaign in three Police Districts across Kabul to humanely control the entire stray dog population in the areas Nowzad was recognised for our tireless work in rabies prevention by proudly winning the 2017 World Rabies Day Award in the Asian organisation category. This was partly thanks to our mass anti-rabies vaccination drives for dogs, cats and cattle, where we operate in a wide range of areas, from migrant camps and remote villages to foreign embassies, as well as providing free vaccinations and sterilisations to owned and stray animals. Nowzad also provides detailed clinical and rabies prevention training to over 100 veterinary students each year, in partnerships with local veterinary schools including the Kabul Veterinary University. In addition to this, Nowzad educates on the dangers of rabies in facilities all over Kabul, from schools and orphanages to Drug Rehabilitation Centres and Women's Groups. Veterinary Training The Nowzad clinic is based in Kabul, home to several veterinary education facilities and we are proud to say that we have partnered with these institutions, including the Kabul Veterinary University, to ensure that the future Veterinarians of Afghanistan receive essential training, so that animals all around Afghanistan will be treated proficiently and empathetically. With over an impressive ONE HUNDRED Veterinary Students annually enrolled in our Practical Training program
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