AAEP Foundation Partners with TEVA to Aid Relief Efforts Following Volcán de Fuego Eruption
The Texas Equine Veterinary Association (TEVA) Foundation has donated $5,000 to relief efforts for the disaster caused by erupted Volcán de Fuego in Guatemala, and the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) Foundation has matched the donation.
“As the American Association of Equine Practitioners Foundation seeks to improve the welfare of horses and provide resources and leadership for the benefit of the industry, it is our utmost privilege and obligation to contribute during this time of tragedy,” said AAEP Foundation Council Chairman Dr. Richard Mitchell.
“When we talk about donations and volunteering in veterinary medicine, we typically are dealing with ongoing situations and problems to help with,” said Rob Franklin, DVM. “But when you have a natural disaster, emergency situation like the recent tragic volcanic eruption in Central Guatemala, that is where you get the biggest return on your donation. These people and their animals are in crisis mode.
Emergency response is the first thing we should always be ready to do as a Foundation. We’re very much a part of the primary care for the horses within the Chimaltenango and San Andres Iztapa communities, and when they raise a red flag and have an emergency, it is very natural for us to be the first to respond.”
Dr. Franklin has played a leading role in the TEVA Foundation’s Equitarian Project, which provides veterinary care to working horses and donkeys in the rural areas around Chimaltenango in Guatemala biannually. TEVA members and sponsors work with local veterinarians to educate and provide services to working equids that improve or care for the lives of thousands of impoverished people. Groups of veterinarians, veterinary assistants, equine volunteers, and industry partners are based in the UNESCO Heritage City of Antigua, Guatemala, near Volcano Fuego, which erupted June 4.
“For a lot of the horses in the rural areas around Chimaltenango, we are their veterinarians,” said Dr. Franklin, “and we have been for the past six years. I'm so glad we get to be a part of helping them during this time of need.”
The TEVA Board of Directors and TEVA Foundation Board of Directors work diligently to pursue the missions of each. TEVA strives to provide professional development and educational opportunities for its members; encourage collegial relationships among members and with the equine industry; and guard, improve and advocate for the health and welfare of the horse. The TEVA Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization, is the charitable arm of TEVA. Funds raised by the TEVA Foundation are allocated at its discretion for the fruition of said missions.
“Our hearts are broken for the villagers and the animals in Guatemala that are affected by the volcano,” said MWI Equine Specialist Ed Strickland. “We’ll continue to work to send relief to them.”
Strickland has supported the Equitarian Project personally, as well as represented MWI Animal Health and Veterinary Supply as a supporter. MWI provides requisition of goods and supplies for the Equitarian Project. Strickland said they coordinate products through manufacturers and donate anything else through MWI.
The Texas Equine Veterinary Association (TEVA) is dedicated to providing the highest quality regional equine veterinary educational opportunities for practitioners. The TEVA Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization, was established to support benevolence in the equine industry and equine welfare, geared towards regions served by the TEVA membership through research, education and outreach. TEVA is a supporter American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP). The AAEP Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization created in 1994, serves as the charitable arm of the American Association of Equine to improve the welfare of the horse. Since its inception, the Foundation has disbursed more than $4 million to support its mission.
*Please note the image has been edited due to its graphic nature.