Karoo Animal Protection Society
Staff Payroll Giving Programme – Over 1 340 Old Mutual employees choose to make monthly contributions from their salaries into the Old Mutual Staff Volunteer Fund. These donations, totalling approximately R108 000, are matched rand-for-rand by the Old Mutual Foundation. Support is given to deserving organisations such as KAPS (Karoo Animal Protection Society) and Elim Hlanganani Care for the Aged.
“For years I closed my eyes,” says Colette Teale, founder of KAPS (Karoo Animal Protection Society). “I never wanted to go into the townships and instead phoned the SPCA or the police if I saw mistreatment. But when we retired I thought, ‘let me try and help.‘”
Colette and her husband Percy live on their farm in Barrydale, a Klein Karoo dorp tucked into the foothills of the Langeberg Mountains. She established KAPS in 2001, a small organisation which has made a difference with limited resources. Ten years later there’s an increased awareness of good pet practice in Barrydale and the surrounding towns, with fewer dogs on chains, most have water bowls and the animal growth rate has decreased. Because of the poverty in these areas, Colette is insistent that services such as mass sterilisation clinics are provided for free. “It helps to reduce the number of unwanted pets which leads to domestic neglect and cruelty,” she explains.
There are over 20 rescued dogs at her house and they’re all on the mend, some still nervous or anxious, others eager and excitable. There’s a cacophony of barking and wagging whenever we move. Colette has been granted magisterial authority to conduct inspections, removals and initiate prosecutions in specific cases of animal neglect or cruelty. This means that she’s not always popular or welcome, but she adds, “I’m afraid I’m a bit of a fighter, I just can’t sit back and accept something.”
In 2011, staff donated R15 000 to KAPS (matched by another R15 000 by the Old Mutual Foundation) towards mass sterilisation clinics in the Overberg area. In 2010, R29 640 was provided to KAPS for the purchase of new donkey bridles, as many carthorses are forced to use ill-fitting bridles causing them injuries. The Staff Payroll Giving Programme supports the ‘Adopt’ an Orphan programme (page 74) and organisations specialising in the care of abused and neglected children, the elderly (page 42), animal welfare and HIV support.