World Rabies Day inaugurated at TC in advance

Tibet Charity (TC) was off to a flying start on Wednesday, with a host of special guests and dignitaries both from the local and wider communities as well as from abroad. It was a great honour to welcome Ms Ghyslaine Calmel Bloke and Ms Brigitte Auloy, the CEO and Project manager respectively of the Bridget Bardot Foundation, France (BBF), TC Animal Section’s principal financial sponsor.
Ms Yeshey Dolma hosted the event by first introducing the director of TC, Mr Tsering Thundup, who gave the welcome address in which he outlined TC’s approach to the eradication of rabies, its history and the extent of the TC programme. In the 7 years since the projects launch there have been sustained and remarkable achievements in controlling the dog population and dog related problems in the region. He credited BBF, TCV School, the state Animal Husbandry Department, WVS England, Animal SOS Denmark and the volunteers for the success they have had so far.

There followed a number of informative and inspiring talks from our guest of honour and special guests; the key supporters, sponsors and senior officials connected with the TC programme.

Guest of Honour, Mr Tsewang Yeshi la, the President of Tibetan Children’s Village School (TCV), gave a moving account of a ‘rabies incident’ in TCV school in 1988 when he had to rush 14 possibly infected children to Delhi (12 hours away) as no treatment was available at that time.  Now, he said, rabies has been unheard of in the region thanks to rabies eradication program by Tibet Charity. He also outlined the great strides and cooperation with TC since then.

Ms Brigitte Auloy, Project Manager, BBF, having just met with HH the Dalai Lama, one of the patrons and inspiration of their foundation, modestly and comprehensively described the BBF projects worldwide and particularly in India. She emphasised that the work being undertaken in Dharamsala is a cooperative effort and thanked all participants and volunteers. Feeling impressed by the works of Tibet Charity, she promised to broaden the collaboration with TC India.

Dr Tseten Dorjee Sadhutsang, Chief Medical Officer, Tibetan Delek Hospital, Dharamsala educated the public on ‘Rabies and Humans: Causes, Symptoms & Prevention’. He explained how anti-rabies vaccination program by TC in the region has benefitted the people in the region as no rabid dog bite cases has been reported in the hospital for last 7 years. He proposed TC to educate the local medics on ways to treat the patients when rabid dog bite cases are reported to them.

Dr. V C Katoch, Deputy Director of Animal Husbandry Department, Dharamsala talked on “Rabies in Animals: Causes, Symptoms & Prevention”. While appreciating the good works of Tibet Charity in the fields of animal welfare, he promised full cooperation from the Department in tackling animal related issues.

Finally, an eloquent vote of thanks was made by Ms Tenzin Namsel, coordinator of TC Healthcare section, prior to the inauguration of the 2014 Mass Anti-Rabies Vaccination programme by Dr V C Katoch who vaccinated the first ‘volunteer’.

Paula steps up! 

You could be forgiven for thinking that Paula – Tibet Charity hound in residence – has a needle stuck in her backside every day. Not a yelp, whimper or even a look of anxiety crossed her face when up she went to be the first dog to have the anti-rabies vaccine in this year’s round of several hundred vaccinations. I suspect Paula may have already spotted the tea and snacks and decided considerable ‘street cred’ would mean more than usual ‘snack rewards’. She was right…thanks to the kind and caring nurses of the TC Healthcare Section.
There followed, into the capable hands of Drs B N Sharma and Sujay Sharma, other willing participants…though some seemed a little more surprised by the experience than Paula.

A wonderful sunny morning was enjoyed by all, concluding with tea, snacks and informal discussions.