What is heroism?

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Heroism is not defined by superhuman feats or extraordinary abilities, rather it’s the quiet willingness to stand up for the vulnerable, even with fear as your adversary.

Many of the communities our Inspectors enter to help are plagued by high crime rates and violence and it is within these environments that our staff must navigate to make the biggest possible positive impact on the lives of animals. Their mission is far from easy; aside from the cruelty they witness daily, they often face verbal and physical abuse from animal abusers – but last week they faced something worse.

Collection Officer Siyabonga Dlomo, while collecting unwanted and injured animals in the Phillipi area suddenly found himself staring down the barrel of a gun. 

Robbed of his work cellphone, his cellphone and his wallet and cash he watched as the thieves attempted to get away with the SPCA vehicle too.  Fortunately, thanks to a struggle with the dog trailer attached to the vehicle the hijack attempt failed and the men fled the scene leaving our Collection Officer shaken but unharmed.

Our Cadet Inspector Clodeen Arnolds was attending to a complaint in Kraaifontein when she too faced a group of armed men while engaging with a pet owner over his fence.

As the group encircled her with one pushing the gun to her chest, the quick-thinking homeowner ran into his house and pushed his panic button before running back to her aid.  As he shouted and banged on his gate the group beat a hasty retreat and disappeared into a nearby informal settlement.

After reporting the incidents, they both went back to work.

Our Inspectorate team may not wear capes, but like heroes, they wear the armour of kindness and carry a shield of unwavering courage. Like heroes, they choose to act in the face of fear.

For heroism is not the lack of dread,
But the power to face it, undeterred instead.
It’s the fight for the weak, the voice for the mute,
A mantle of honour, in everyday pursuit. 

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