According to our CEO, Moyo Ndukwana, the SPCA’s Compassion in Farming programme is already having an impact on the health and welfare of livestock raised by small scale farmers in the Blue Downs area.
Emerging farmer, Minta Claude, is a shining example of someone who has learned to treat his livestock with understanding, compassion and respect – and has put this learning to immediate use.
With the help of some donated roofing materials, he has begun upgrading the shelters where he keeps his pigs. Now they will have protection from the sun and rain. Before attending our Compassion in Farming project, in partnership with German based non-profit, Welttierschutzgesellschaft e.V. (WTG), Minta hadn’t really given much thought to the pigs’ comfort and welfare.
Spearheaded by our dedicated Education Officer, Thembi Nomkala, who specializes in the care of farm animals and works hands-on with farmers to help them implement positive changes to animal husbandry and health, the programme rolled out during September last year. Thembi visited 12 farms to assess the condition of livestock and encourage small farmers to make improvements where possible.
He was particularly impressed to find one of ‘his’ farmers, Mr Pedro, has been passing on his new-found knowledge to his neighbours, showing them how to improve their livestock shelters and drainage, feeding, parasite control, transportation and vaccinations. It all adds up to healthier, better cared for pigs, sheep, goats and cattle.
The cherry on the top was having our SPCA Education Team once again invited to display at the annual Agri-Expo Livestock in October. “When the organisers found out about our Compassion in Farming project,” explained Moyo, “they invited all our graduate farmers to attend free of charge, giving them the opportunity to experience a world class showcase of the South African livestock and dairy industries, and to network with experienced farmers who may be willing to help them improve further.”