The inspirational tale of Mdzananda Animal Clinic started 25 years ago after an observant Khayelitsha community member noticed that his neighbours didn’t know how to care for their animals.
Mr Joe Manchu ventured out with a shopping trolley, going door-to door, feeding dogs and cats and educating people on the needs of their pets. His selfless acts soon grabbed the attention of many volunteers, and thereafter, a shipping container was donated which became the first ever animal clinic in Khayelitsha.
Mdzananda Animal Clinic is now celebrating 25 years of helping, healing and rescuing pets in Khayelitsha, and treats over 1 000 animals per month. This is done through their hospital facility, homeless shelter, mobile clinics and outreach programmes. In addition, they have continued to educate pet owners so that these animals receive the best quality of life.
Lazola Sotyingwa was one of the young volunteers who helped Mr Joe in his efforts to save animals, and is now one of the Clinic’s Animal Welfare Assistants. “At the beginning we had no running water or electricity. We carried buckets of water and ran extension cables from the neighbours. Today we are big and we help so many animals. It’s thanks to Mr Joe that the pets of Khayelitsha have help today,” Sotyingwa said.
The vision of the organisation is simple: to create a community that loves animals. And when you genuinely care for an animal, you’re able to adopt qualities such as respect, trust, non-violence, responsibility, and companionship.
“Where previously pets were simply objects protecting the home, many of them are now companions sleeping in peoples’ beds. Our welfare services and educational programmes have really transformed many pet lovers in the community,” says Dr Brian Bergman, the Clinic’s Senior Veterinarian.
The animal clinic will be hosting a celebration on November 13 from 11am to 4pm to celebrate their 25 years of service, and members of the community are invited to take part in the festivities. The first 200 pets will receive a free rabies vaccination and blanket.
Mr Joe, who is now elderly, will unpack his hard work and the vision for the future, while the Isibane seAfrica choir will provide soulful music.
The clinic has also launched a special birthday edition 2022 calendar featuring 12 artworks, crafted by local artists to illustrate the heart and soul of Mdzananda. Calendars can be purchased at outlets listed on www.mdzananda.co.za or by emailing [email protected].
“Our work has only been possible thanks to generous donors, supporters, monthly Paw Members and partners. Without this support we could never have reached this enormous milestone,” says Marcelle du Plessis, Fundraising and Communications Manager.
If you wish to support the organization into its next 25 years, please make a donation to Mdzananda Animal Clinic, Standard Bank, Savings Account, 075595710, become a Paw Member (monthly donor) at www.mdzanandasecure.co.za, contact [email protected] or visit www.mdzananda.co.za.