Dogs, people, and even lions saved from rabies through education and vaccination: the story of Ewaso Lions.

Ewaso Lions participants are trained using the offline GARC Education Platform materials for the Rabies Educator Certificate.

In 2019, Ewaso Lions launched a new program to address the challenges communities and domestic dogs face in the Samburu landscape in northern Kenya. The program known as Kura’s Pride (named after Ewaso Lions’ famous pet called “Kura”), will lead to healthier dogs and could lead to less human-carnivore conflict, reduced disease transmission between domestic and wild carnivores, and an overall healthier balance between people, livestock, wildlife, and the environment.

Jeneria from Ewaso Lions sits his assessment for the offline GARC Rabies Educator Certificate (REC) course.

To date, we have accomplished a tremendous amount under the leadership of the Samburu County Department of Veterinary Services and collaborative partners. In 2020, over 2,600 animals were vaccinated against rabies and distemper, whilst visiting over 1,210 households across 48 villages. Looking long-term, we aim to scale up Kura’s Pride by collaborating with partners to ensure connectivity of vaccination and sterilization efforts across the landscape and across county borders in northern Kenya in particular.

As we get ready to embark on vaccinations in mid-2021, thanks to the tremendous support from the Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC), Ewaso Lions brought together medical, veterinary and wildlife professionals from Samburu to complete the GARC Rabies Educator Course. Nine professionals have since completed the course successfully with more online courses planned for the rest of 2021. In addition to this, the advice and expertise provided by GARC is helping us put together comprehensive education and awareness material prior to the start of the vaccination campaigns. Thank you GARC for the amazing support provided to Ewaso Lions and professionals working in Samburu.

Article contributed by Dr Shivani Bhalla, Founder and Executive Director Ewaso Lions.