Bigger and better. The World Rabies Day awards for 2021
This year, the World Rabies Day awards come to you bigger and better. That is because we have worked with our supporter, Boehringer-Ingelheim, to revamp the categories to make the awards more applicable to a bigger group – that means that we have made it easier for more people to participate and win!
Not only are there exciting new categories, but the prize has also increased. Winners will receive a USD1,500 cash prize as well as another USD1,500 in support from GARC! Yes, you read that correctly – this year, winners will receive a prize to the value of USD3,000 in total to support their efforts to eliminate rabies. GARC’s support will include the localization and training of you and your colleagues with the latest surveillance and education tools, including a mobile app to gather data to estimate your dog population, track vaccinations, track TNVR programs and much more.
Now that we hopefully have your attention, let’s go through the new categories. The individual and organization categories that were used during past awards have been dissolved and completely replaced with four new and exciting categories, namely the Veterinary Clinic champion, the Education champion, the Vaccination champion, and the Animal welfare champion. We wanted to recognize every person that contributes towards rabies control and elimination – whether in a direct capacity such as through mass dog vaccination, or perhaps in other ways such as through dog population management programs or education initiatives.
Wherever you are in the world, you can apply to any of the categories and stand a chance to win
The categories explained
Veterinary Clinic champion:
We want to acknowledge the incredible role that private practice practitioners contribute to rabies control and elimination, which is a completely new concept for the World Rabies Day awards. This award aims to recognize those veterinary clinics or practitioners that contribute to their community with outreach work or pro bono work. For instance, clinics that provide free rabies vaccinations.
Dog vaccination is the most effective and efficient means to eliminate dog-mediated rabies globally. While we often hear about the efforts of large international groups or organizations, this category focuses on celebrating those individuals who contribute to vaccinating dogs against rabies in their community. Every vaccinated dog is a soldier in the fight against rabies, so let’s highlight those local individuals and organizations working hard to vaccinate as many dogs as they can – even with limited capacity and resources! So, whether you vaccinate 50 dogs or 30 000 dogs, you can still be nominated and stand a chance to win.
We all know the importance of education and its role in rabies elimination efforts. Without education, people would not have the knowledge to seek treatment or would not ensure that their dogs are vaccinated. Therefore, we have dedicated an entire category to celebrate those people doing rabies-related education work in their communities. This can include general awareness and advocacy, educating children, promoting responsible dog ownership, developing great resources, or any other education activity relating to rabies elimination.
Animal welfare champion:
The role of dog population management (DPM) contributes to rabies through reducing the susceptible population of dogs, reducing human-animal conflict, and improving community trust and engagement. In recognition, we have created this category to celebrate those individuals who are working to improve DPM and those who are working to end indiscriminate culling of dogs in the name of rabies control. All animal welfare activities are welcome (e.g., shelters, feeding programs etc.) but the link to rabies elimination must be clear. Those individuals working hard to improve the lives of dogs and to eliminate rabies can apply! DPM programs can include sterilization, TNVR campaigns and waste management initiatives, among others.
We hope to see you, your friend and your colleagues being nominated so that we can highlight the great work that is being done all around the world to eliminate rabies using different approaches and techniques. We will not only highlight winners, but also shortlisted individuals through social media and our website ensuring that your work reaches a global audience.
Good luck! The award nominations close on Monday 20 September, so hurry and nominate yourself or someone now!
Article contributed by: Dr Terence Scott (World Rabies Day team lead), GARC