Congratulations to the recipients of the World Rabies Day MSD Animal Health Awards

GARC is honoured to recognise outstanding contributions to rabies prevention with the first World Rabies Day MSD Animal Health Awards. Every awardee received USD 1,200 (or equivalent in kind), a certificate and an award plaque. The award winners are listed here:

Individual Category Awardees

Organisation Category Awardees

Dr. Thinlay Bhutia (Asia), leader of the Sikkim Anti-Rabies and Animal Health Program (SARAH) in India, has worked to end local dog culling and implement stray-dog and rabies-control efforts that have reduced the street dog populations and reduce the incidence of rabies.

Dr Agnes Korir(Sub-Saharan Africa) founded the Sharon Live On Foundation following the death from rabies of her seven-year old daughter and has supplied over 270,000 vaccinations to dogs in Kenya.

Professor Kastriot Korro(Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia & Europe) represents the National Focal Point for wildlife diseases for Albania, and continues to sustaincommunity awareness against rabies in people and domestic and wild animals, efforts he has engaged insince 1996.

Dr. Sergio Recuenco-Cabrera(Americas) is an advocate for controlling vampire bat-associated rabies in the Amazon while working within the CDC, Rabies in the Americas and subsidiary meetings, Pan American Health Organization, the Peruvian Ministry of Health (MOH) and National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Visakha Society for Protection And Care of Animals(Asia) advocates for and implements humane alternatives to culling street dogs in the state of Andhra Pradesh.

Liberia Animal Welfare & Conservation Society (LAWCS, Sub-Saharan Africa)provides education and outreach support for rabies awareness and dog bite prevention in Liberian schools and communities, while also running no-cost, dog-rabies vaccination campaigns.

Kurdistan Organization for Animal Rights Protection(KOARP, Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia & Europe)focuses its work on rabies prevention and animal welfare through volunteer-run veterinary services for stray animals, while also working to reform stray-dog-control laws.

Zach Jones Memorial Fund (ZJMF, Americas) was launched to promote rabies awareness and research after Connie and Larry Jones lost their only child, Zach, at 16 years of age to rabies after a bat bite in 2006.

The idea behind the awards was to draw more attention to the positive work being done to bring us closer to the goal of eliminating human deaths by canine rabies in 2030. To accomplish this, GARC teamed up with veterinary pharmaceutical manufacturer MSD Animal Health to launch these awards for the 10th World Rabies Day. The eight award winners were chosen by a panel of judges from the CDC, FAO, OIE, WHO, MSD and GARC, along with voting by MSD employees.

It is hoped that by highlighting the work of these winners and nominees, more emphasis can be placed on the sustained progress that happens daily in communities around the world. Additionally, knowing there are dedicated individuals who continue to accomplish so much is a source of inspiration for us all, and we hope that you’ll send in more great nominations for next year’s awards. View more information about the winners and the shortlisted nominees and the great work they’re doing, at

Submitted by Deepa Balaram and Laura Baker, GARC