Volunteer access to Adeje’s animal rescue centre

Adeje council will soon vote on regulations allowing volunteers to assist in the municipal animal rescue centre

The Adeje council organised a meeting this afternoon (June 15th) to outline and seek reaction to the proposed regulations allowing volunteer access to the Adeje animal rescue centre. The meeting was called by the councillor for health promotion and quality of life, Amada Trujillo Bencomo, with Adolfo Alonso, in the role of council spokesperson, Manuel Luis Méndez Martín, councillor for local development, Oliver Tacaronte, councillor and member of the Coalicion Canaria party and Inma Évora, a well-known animal rights activist. The other political groups represented in the Adeje council were unable, for various reasons, to attend but have indicated their interest in the text of the document which will be sent to them over the following days.

Councillor Trujillo said “we are making good the promise to allow volunteers to carry out some duties in the centre with a series of agreed norms for their benefit and that of the animals in the centre. This will be a partnership which is why we have held this meeting and are open to opinions and reactions. The meeting was very positive and we have taken board a number of suggestions that will strengthen the final document leading towards a better response to the needs of the centre and thus helping the wellbeing of the animals that find themselves there”.

The document prepared by the Adeje council is based on a 1998 law on volunteering in the Canaries. Among the requirements those wishing to enter the centre to volunteer must be over 18 and registered with a legally constituted volunteer organisation. There will be 10 places open to volunteers and people will be allocated their place for a set period of time to allow others also take up the opportunity. Each volunteer who is granted a place will also be asked to undertake a month-long training period where they will be trained in agreed duties and obligations and then given full accreditation. After one year as a volunteer they must reapply and places will be granted on the basis of availability, priority given to those applying for the first time.

Among the duties will be walking the animals, brushing and showering, play time and training geared towards their socialisation, always under the supervision of the centre’s administrator. Other duties would include feeding and care for puppies. The volunteers may also assist in the adoption of animals within the established norms of the centre.

Those individuals who are successfully incorporated into the volunteer team must attend for at least 50% of the agreed times, carry out their activities in the agreed time slots and follow the instruction of the person in charge. There will be certain limits to their involvement; they may not carry out administrative tasks, enter or involve themselves in the veterinary area, change dogs from one cage to another, give food or drink or any medication to the animals, etc. These and other duties will remain in the hands of the official personnel.

The Adeje animal rescue centre was built in 2010 at a cost of over 100,000 euro and is a municipally controlled centre, “from which we care for animals that have been abandoned by their owners, and we have a vet who works with us to mind the animals from the moment they enter the centre. They are given a check-up, and any medication they may require. We also have a team from the council who work at the centre, maintaining hygienic standards, and feeding and caring for the animals as well as carrying out any administrative work needed. The council also has a covenant with an animal protection association who helps in the adoption process with families who will offer the animal a home and love. Our commitment to zero levels of euthanasia is solid”, added the councillor.

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