ACCOMPLISHED IN 2022
[SELF POLICED ‘WILDLIFE CARE’ REGULATION FROM WITHIN THE WILDLIFE RESCUE/REHABILITATION COMMUNITY]
As the Wildlife Rescue Industry is unregulated in Wales, England and Northern Ireland, whenever a member of the public takes a wildlife casualty to a Wildlife Rescue or Rehabber, they can't know in advance - unless it is one of the few very large centres - whether they are dropping that animal off at the welfare equivalent of a hospital or a horror shop.
The Wildlife Care Badge wants to change all that...
The launch of the WCB has been fantastic, in 2022. It launched at the Secret World Wildlife Conference in February (where Alana, one of the WCB Co-Founders - was asked to speak under the heading, 'Wildlife Rehabilitation: An Outsiders Overview.' You can check out the presentation HERE). The presentation was a big success and drew in a lot of support for the WCB.
The WCB was developed over a YEAR of Zoom meetings, by Wildlife Rescues & Rehabbers (from tiny one man/woman set ups to large centres) as well as Vets (both wildlife specific & general practice) & Vet Nurses.
It was developed BY Wildlife Professionals FOR Wildlife Professionals.
The WCB is very much just starting off (with the launch of the 'Rehab, Release & Transit Badge Accreditation' ) and here are a list of its successes, during 2022...
- We have 21 RR&T Badge Holders.
- We have almost another 30 Rehabbers signed up - to go through the process - to get their own RR&T Badge.
- Our first set of WCB Webinars launched in 2022. In 2022 we held a Webinar/Brainstorming Session on how Vets/Rehabbers can better work together, to help wildlife AND we held a Policies Webinar on which policies should be in place to successfully run a Wildlife Rescue. 3 more webinars are scheduled for 2023: Wildlife In Law, Treating Wild Birds In Vet Practices & Wildlife Hub Tiers.
- The WCB has united Vets & Rehabbers in an unprecedented way: creating a growing united community of Wildlife Rehabbers & Vet Professionals who are now regularly meeting, speaking and collaborating to help our UK wildlife. (Previously, as a general rule, there has been division and a lack of understanding between Vet Professionals and Wildlife Rescues, with neither side fully being aware of & acknowledging the skill sets that each offered and how they could work together. Even though there were individual cases of Rehabbers and Vet Professionals working well together across the UK, as two separate, professional groups there was often disharmony and a lack of open communication. More and more - as we start to hold more formalised meetings between Vet Professionals & Wildlife Rehabbers, under the umbrella of the WCB community - we are bridging this gap and helping these incredible professionals to do what they do best: help animals).
- The WCB was launched to stand up for the rights of wildlife to proper care. The WCB - just by being developed & launched by Rehabbers/Vets working together - has sparked an open conversation, questioning the rights of us humans to take a wildlife casualty into our power (however well intentioned) if we can not offer a sufficient level of care and treatment. We are also supporting Rehabbers to establish themselves well enough to be able to offer this high welfare level of care: the right premises, a minimum amount of knowledge and a great working relationship with a Vet.
- Presentations about the WCB and wildlife rights have been invited by one college and one Wildlife Rescue (as part of their training days) so far.
- We held one Compassion Fatigue session for Vet Professionals & Wildlife Rehabbers: offering emotional support to help these professionals to help wildlife. (Time was also spent during 2022 to find a way to establish regular funding to run these sessions monthly, ongoing, from 2023).
- The Vet Wildlife Support Package: this collection of 'How to Guide Pdf' resources (created BY wildlife experienced Vets, FOR Vets Practices across the UK, to help Vets Practices to more quickly and easily treat wildlife casualties that get brought into them by members of the public) had been requested by 40 Vet Practices across the UK by the end of 2022.