Operation Potcake - BAARK Bahamas

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SPCA International is happy to help spread the word about Baark’s Operation Potcake 2013.  SPCA International distributed a shelter grant to Baark! in October 2012 in support of their ongoing work to spay & neuter in the Bahamas.  You can visit Baark’s website: www.baarkbahamas.org.

Guest Blog by Laura Kimble Chairman, Baark!

WOW! It is unbelievable that we are just 1 month away from Operation Potcake 2013!

Operation Potcake is a ten-day high-volume spay and neuter program to be held in January 2013 on New Providence Island in the Bahamas.  Volunteers from across the globe will be joining with local organizations and veterinarians in hopes to spay and neuter approximately 2,000 stray and owned animals.

Sarah Kennedy of Baark! met Emma Clifford of Animal Balance in 2010 at the No More Homeless Pets conference and emails about spay and neuter programs followed.  Then, in April 2011, Kim Aranha (President of The Bahamas Humane Society), Lissa McCombe (Board member of Bahamas Humane Society and Baark!) and Laura Kimble (Chairman of Baark! and board member of Bahamas Humane Society) met Emma in Puerto Rico at the HSI’s Caribbean Animal Welfare conference, and the idea was born.  Emma and Dr. Byron Maas would come and visit to ‘evaluate’ our situation in Nassau, Bahamas.  In November 2011 Emma did just that, and ‘Operation Potcake’ was born.

Planning started slowly but in April 2012, we really jumped into gear, and the last couple of months we have been increasing our efforts.  It feels like we are putting together a military operation.  We decided we would have 5 clinic locations across the island, situated within the community to make it easy.  Tent locations are possible but due to crime we would have to set up and break down every morning and evening, taking away precious surgery time, so for most of our places we have found buildings that can be used as clinic locations.

Operation Potcake kicks off on January 10th 2013.  The exact dates are Thursday January 10th to Monday January 21st, 2013, with two days break mid-way. Clinics open daily at 7:30 a.m. and close at night with the last animal.  Animals will generally go home on the same day but provisions will be made for necessary

There are so many people making this possible.  It took all the local animal welfare organizations, government and Veterinarian Association to come together to agree to move forward.  Emma Clifford of Animal Balance is rounding up her troops bringing in volunteer vets, vet techs, recovery experts and other volunteers.  Consie von Gontard is calling on her trapping team and also bringing in some traps and carriers for this large operation.  We have a large team of local volunteers organizing as much as possible on the ground, working together with Emma and Consie over Skype and email.  It is really encouraging to see people coming together.

The goal is to both spay and neuter 2,000 animals and also to get into the local communities and educate people how important it is to spay and neuter their pets.  We will have enough supplies to spay and neuter 2,000 animals.  We hope that a large concentrated effort will shine the light on spaying and neutering, and help kick off the Veterinary Association's 5 year plan to drastically reduce the number of unwanted animals in the Bahamas.  The local animal welfare groups have committed to a long-term plan and we feel that an initial blitz will make our goals achievable. 

All the many people who have donated funds!
Our amazing volunteers, both local and foreign!
Sandals (hotel rooms)
Hope Water (water for one of the clinics)
BaTelCo (coupons towards the phone line)
The Sign Man (banner for pre-publicity)
... more to come!

Tagged in: spay-neuter
Location: Seattle, WA
On Staff Since: 2007
Companion Animals: Milo, special needs Cocker Spaniel (a.k.a. Milo Man, Mr. M, Little M, Love Bug)
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