Animal Matters, No 1: 30th March, 2012
Welcome to this latest initiative of FIAPO to connect up and inform the animal protection community across the country. Following on from our quarterly newsletters, we decided to send out this e-newsletter fortnightly – every other Friday – so news, research, issues and appeals can be shared from and delivered to our community in a timely manner.
We would also like to share with you that the FIAPO trustees and governors met recently to review the past year's work and to set the course for the following year. The priorities are clear – we want to strengthen our collaborative work with our members and amongst our members on various campaigns and issues – we hope we will have your support.
Please also join us in welcoming to the FIAPO family two new team members – Himani Shetty and Varda Mehrotra.
Varda is based in Jaipur and takes over FIAPO’s member organisation support and development programme. Himani works out of Mumbai and will lead outreach efforts to spread awareness about the consumption of animals.
Under Varda’s leadership, we are re-positioning the member support and development programme to have much greater contact with member groups, help connect up, build, and inform animal protection organisations across India. As a part of this initiative, FIAPO will help members in different parts to connect up with others locally for peer support, collaborative work and to develop a stronger voice for animals. We are currently piloting this in Jaipur and will upscale this as soon as we have a working model available.
Similarly Himani is developing an awareness and education model that would help reduce consumption of animal products. We hope to bring this to our members in the form of a manual, outreach material that they can use and training for running such programmes in their areas. Before we do that, we are attempting various outreach methods ourselves based on the experience of other groups and developing India specific material.
We look forward to bringing you animal matters from all over India, and also from the happenings within FIAPO – so you can participate in federative actions and initiatives as they happen, and you play an active role in the collective that we are. Meanwhile, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any news, appeals, tools that you feel should be a part of this latest informational resource.
Training: Become a better advocate for animal rights.
Many of you will recall the animal legislation training workshop we had organised in September 2011 as a part of our efforts to strengthen the Indian animal protection community. Following from this, FIAPO is organising a training session for beginners and experts alike for advocacy on animal issues. You should attend if you want to find out more about different issues, and learn how to be a better advocate for animals. This training event is in Delhi, and is primarily for people in Delhi. We hope to be organising very similar events in other parts of the country soon. Post-training activities also planned, though optional to attend. See detailed programme and registration info here http://fiapo.org/index.php/component/content/article/38-latest-cerc/358-event-animals-and-us.html
India for Animals 2012
Dates and venue now finalised for the IFA 2012. The conference brings all organisations and activists together at a national level and is a celebration of animal protection across India. More details soon!
Himani writes: Did you know that approximately 90% of all animal suffering in the world happens in the food and dairy industries? And the sheer numbers are mind boggling. FIAPO’s campaign for raising Veg*n awareness is the first comprehensive outreach plan in India, focused on awareness about animals in these industries.
After studying various models of outreach followed by Indian and international organizations, we zeroed down on leafleting as the pilot project of our outreach campaign. This has never been tried in India before; so we simply don’t know if it works! And that is what we are here to try out. Think of it, its information that we want to give out, getting right into the hands of the people. If it works, it is the simplest, most cost effective and fastest way to do outreach. We are now working on effective materials, like leaflets and online resources, which we hope to share very soon. We aim to bring the methods and material to our members once the lessons of the pilot are with us.
Have you ‘liked’ us on Facebook yet? FIAPO on Facebook is your fastest link to news about animals and their protectors in India!
Alokparna writes: A few weeks ago, we participated in a seminar “Animal Health, Well Being & Quality – The Role of Institutional Animal Ethics Committee” in Hyderabad. While ‘improving’ welfare conditions of animals, and bringing in more animal based research was being discussed, we went in with a different and singular agenda – to talk about scientifically tested alternatives to animal experimentation. And we got a lot of support - some of the 100 participants were representatives from India’s top companies in product research. Bringing in scientifically validated data and information on alternatives to animal testing seems to be key in garnering their support, so we plan to increase our participation in such events over the coming months.
Collaborating: Jaipur Federation of Animal Protection Organisations (JFAPO) investigation
Members of our first local federation, JFAPO, set out on ‘Mission Jaisalmer’ to investigate reports on alarming death rates of livestock. Investigations revealed high incidence of Botulism, and we are now working on identifying a strategy to best deal with the situation – through direct intervention, lobbying and legislative action. You can download the brief report (which includes some photos) on this investigation here www.fiapo.org/docs/mar12mjaisalmer.pdf Through meetings arranged by FIAPO, local members are now able to have a much stronger impact politically. We will keep you posted as things progress.
Khushboo Writes: This week, we investigated semi-urban dairies in Gazipur, that supply buffalo milk to different parts of Delhi, twice a day. This cluster of dairies supply milk through their pre defined distribution points in various parts of the city by door to door delivery and also claim to supply to the famous sweet makers Haldirams!
In Gazipur, the air was thick from the strong stench off a landfill near us, and that all-too-familiar smell of accumulated dung. But mysteriously, no animals to be seen! It was only later we realized, the animals were all behind closed doors. Inside those dark, dingy and filthy rooms, we saw on an average 20 buffalos tied next to each other in a row. Calves were gathered and tethered in one corner – gnawing at each other’s body hair and swallowing it. It appears that this is caused by mineral deficiency, which is not surprising considering that the calves would have hardly suckled from their mothers. We saw even diseased animals being milked. We saw all sorts of chemicals and drugs being given to the animals to increase milk production. This made us wonder - what concoctions Delhiites are drinking as milk? Here are some photos from our visit. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.395120347183805.108658.120832497945926&type=1
Isn’t it high time that we start questioning where our milk is coming from and in what conditions it is being produced? Visit a dairy unit from where you get your milk to get a peep into the answer. If you buy packaged milk then visit any neighborhood dairy where your local sweet vendor procures milk. Please write to us if you are interested in a visit or if you would like to share your experience - Khushboo@fiapo.org
Thank you for the tremendous work that you do for animals,