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PRESS RELEASE: Veterinarians Without Borders ramps up support for animals in Ukraine with matching gift on Giving Tuesday (Nov. 29)

OTTAWA, ON, November 10, 2022 - Veterinarians Without Borders/Vétérinaires Sans Frontières (VWB) is excited to share that all donations will be matched starting on Giving Tuesday, (Tues., November 29), up to $6,500, thanks to a caring group of Canadian veterinary professionals. All funds raised on Giving Tuesday will go towards VWB’s Ukrainian program, which is providing critical support to on-the-ground partners in both Ukraine and bordering Romania.

“Since the start of the war in February, Veterinarians Without Borders has been providing critical support for animals and communities affected by devastating bombings and attacks across Ukraine,” said Charmaine Brett, Executive Director at VWB. “Together, with our local partners, we’re supplying food and veterinary medicine to Ukrainian animal shelters and pet owners, along with vaccinations and assisting with animal evacuations from destroyed buildings, and helping to rebuild shelters, when possible,” said Brett. “As the conflict continues and colder temperatures arrive, the need for support is growing, as many animals are living in shelters without power,” she added. Along with these services, VWB is also funding a telehealth program that allows people in Ukraine to access virtual veterinary care.

In Romania, VWB has sent volunteers to assist with animals taken in from bombed Ukrainian shelters, and sending animal care supplies to Ukraine, along with the supporting the critical need in Cernavoda, Romania, to provide veterinary care services. “Our volunteers are working with our Romanian partner, Save the Dogs, to build local capacity, which will also help down the line in providing more support for Ukrainian animals in need,” said Brett.

Oksana Koshak and Olga Kirilovich are co-founders of UPAW, one of VWB’s local Ukrainian partners. They are implementing local aid throughout the most vulnerable regions, which are close to active combat and have been heavily damaged. “Our mission is to strengthen animal welfare in Ukraine and the world; however, the lives of Ukrainian animals are now under threat,” said Koshak. “Since the beginning of the full-scale invasion, we have been providing animals with the most necessary needs – food and veterinary medicine,” Koshak added. “We are deeply grateful to Veterinarians Without Borders, which is supporting UPAW's work,” said Kirilovich. “The need remains significant as winter is coming and, accordingly, the animals’ situation is worsening. We need continued support,” Kirilovich added.

Since the launch of VWB’s Ukrainian program, over 5,000 animals in Ukraine have received veterinary care, more than 2,200 animals have been spayed/neutered, and 270 online consultations have been provided for pet owners. In Romania, VWB has sent volunteers to assist at Save the Dogs, an animal shelter that accepted dogs from a bombed shelter in Odesa and is continuing to send supplies across the border to Ukrainian shelters and communities in need.

Media Contact  

Charmaine Brett
Executive Director 
E: charmaine@vetswithoutborders.ca  
C: +1-613-880-1655

About Veterinarians Without Borders/Vétérinaires Sans Frontières

Using a One Health approach, Veterinarians Without Borders (VWB) works for, and with, communities in need to foster the health of animals, people and the environments that sustain us. VWB works in Africa and Asia to improve the living conditions of the most disadvantaged rural populations through veterinary and agricultural services, sustainable animal production, training, value chain development and sustainable natural resource management. Additionally, we support remote Northern Canadian communities to improve animal health through temporary spay and neuter clinics, reduce the spread of rabies, and work to create the conditions for long-term, community-led sustainable animal health services. VWB is also providing emergency support in Ukraine and Romania to address the growing needs of animals and communities.
 
Learn more at vetswithoutborders.ca 
 
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