We’re delighted to announce that our very own Dr. Abdul Jalil Mohammadzai DVM – Dr. Mo as we and everyone knows him – has been presented with The Association of Dogs and Cats Homes (ADCH) Special Recognition Award 2017 for his innovative work helping thousands of animals in London and Afghanistan and devoting his life to care for and save the lives of animals
Dr. Mo trained as a vet at Kabul University, graduating as the Taliban seized power. They dismissed veterinary science as useless and irrelevant and destroyed the University’s veterinary facilities. Dr. Mo fled to the UK and began volunteering here at The Mayhew so that he could fulfil his dream helping animals, eventually becoming a full-time employee with us working in London and back in his homeland.
Above: Dr. Mo receives his award
He has worked extensively to help rebuild the Veterinary Faculty at Kabul University that was destroyed in the nation’s conflict and provided assistance to Kabul Zoo following its destruction; responding to their urgent appeals to reconstruct secure animal areas, sourcing basic food and medical supplies and attend to some of their sick animals, which he continues to do.
As The Mayhew’s work overseas has grown, Dr. Mo implemented leading animal welfare initiatives in Afghanistan in an extremely challenging environment.
In 2015 he carried out the first ever Dog Population Survey in Kabul with a view to developing a humane dog population management programme and is currently working with the Government to deliver the region’s first animal welfare strategy. He has also provided some of the first scientifically-based statistics on companion animal welfare issues from an Islamic country.
Above: Dr. Mo’s Special Recognition Award video
Soon after The Mayhew was established as an NGO in Afghanistan in August 2016, Dr. Mo single-handedly instigated and negotiated a ground-breaking agreement with Kabul City Authorities to end the cruel culling of street dogs in Kabul. He has developed an animal welfare strategy incorporating rabies prevention and control and dog population management programmes, negotiating with the Afghan Government to roll out the initiatives in Kabul and across Afghanistan in the long-term.
As well as working on top level strategies for the country, over the years Dr. Mo has effectively worked on the ground, facilitating the training and development of hundreds of vets and students at Kabul University and organising donations and shipment of equipment and academic books for their Veterinary Faculty. He continues to train qualified and student vets as well as performing life-saving surgery on animals, working with the shelters in Kabul including Tigger House and Nowzad.
Claire Horton, ADCH Chairman, spoke on behalf of the judging panel: “The judges were blown away by Mohammad’s inspiring outreach work, where he has set out a clear programme for veterinary help and training in Afghanistan. This is truly a breakthrough achievement. We share his colleagues’ praise for Mohammad and celebrate his passion, determination and commitment to helping animals across the globe. He should be incredibly proud of all he has achieved.”
Caroline Yates, CEO, The Mayhew Animal Home, says: “ I, and everyone at The Mayhew, are incredibly proud of Dr. Mo and what he has achieved. He is determined to improve animal welfare and veterinary standards in Afghanistan and also implement a sustainable rabies prevention programme that will help the Afghan people and communities.”
“For 15 years, Dr. Mo has volunteered and worked at The Mayhew, devoting his knowledge and care to help thousands of animals and fulfilling his dream of making a change for good, both for animals and people in his homeland. He is a very much loved and respected member of The Mayhew team. He is kind, professional, willing to help everyone and modest. This award could not have gone to a more deserving person.”
The award, presented last night at the ADCH Conference in Birmingham, is awarded to an outstanding individual who has gone above and beyond to tackle the biggest issues and challenges in animal welfare. The award is decided by the ADCH Management Committee judging panel who determine who stands out for having achieved significant impact and represents everything that is good about working in welfare.
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