Working for Change

Dear Friends,

As the summer approaches here in the UK, many people prepare for a well-deserved break, a holiday, time to recharge the batteries and reconnect with friends and family.

My colleague, Daniel Turner, reflects on these themes in his Guest Blog which follows.

He is right – it is a struggle but we are making progress.

So over to Daniel.

Blogging off

Will

Working for Change

Let’s face it, working for an international animal protection NGO is hard. Working long hours striving to achieve what is often regarded as an impossible task: to improve the lives of individual animals. At the Born Free Foundation one of our short and medium term objectives is to improve the conditions for wild animals housed in captivity and our focus is the millions of wild animals in zoos, circuses and the individual animals kept as private ‘pets’ – all exploited in one way or another to provide entertainment. Ultimately, we believe wild animals should not be kept in captivity, but whilst we continue to challenge the concept, much of our work focuses on the welfare of the individual animal and the laws that should be providing for their protection.

Fueling our onward momentum are the momentary successes which have recently included an end to the purchasing of wild-caught dolphins from the notorious Japanese Taiji dolphin hunt by the 1000 members of the Japanese Association of Zoos and Aquaria (JAZA), a successful campaign to end the production of ‘Dolphins with the Stars’, a reality TV show exploiting dolphins in a Portuguese zoo, and the agreement by individual travel companies to stop offering holiday activities that may involve any cruel treatment of animals. Successes that make all the hard work worth it.

Our struggle to bring positive change for animals and to develop compassionate policy continues, but what is obvious is we are not alone. Millions of people support our work, thousands of people send us reports of animal cruelty and neglect seeking our support and help, and those that can, send us donations so we can continue our work. As I enter my 15th year working for the Born Free Foundation, it is clear to me that despite the hard work, there is change, life for animals in captivity is improving, better laws now exist to protect animals and increasingly more people support our belief that wild animals belong in the wild.

Thank you for believing in Born Free.

Onwards.

Daniel Turner

Programmes Manager, Captivity Policy.

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