An equine charity will save almost 14,000 drought-stricken donkeys by providing life saving hay and water.
Below average rainfall has caused drought in Kenya with the government having declared the situation a national disaster.
The drought, which has caused rivers and dams to dry up, is expected to last until July.
Almost 14,000 donkeys were left in dire need of food and water, with some struggling without water for three days at a time.
International welfare charity Brooke has stepped in and since 1 March has been bringing aid to these animals.
Brooke’s East Africa office is working with local partners — Agency for Pastoralists Development, Farm Systems Kenya and Kenya Veterinary Associations – to provide 13,100 donkeys with water, and 800 with hay.
The team are also providing vaccinations and emergency veterinary treatments.
“We have been able to provide water for these donkeys, fuels to power the water pumps and also hay and feed,” said Brooke’s chief executive, Petra Ingram.
Thanks to its supporters, the charity has exceeded its £23,600 target for the emergency response.
“Tens of thousands of litres of water have been delivered to communities in greatest need, hundreds of litres of fuel have been supplied to boreholes allowing donkeys to quench their thirst and feed is being distributed to owners,” added a Brooke spokesman.
Friends of Brooke
Yesterday (4 April), Brooke launched Friends of Brooke (www.thebrooke.org/friends), a new initiative for its supporters.
Hosted by charity patron and newsreader Alastair Stewart at Surrey’s Loseley Park, the evening gave guests the chance to find out about the programme.
Through an annual donation, the friends scheme allows members to become more closely involved with Brooke, receive invites to special events and exclusive updates on the charity’s work.
“We are so grateful to our donors for helping us reach so many animals in need,” said Ms Ingram.
“Friends of Brooke is the perfect opportunity for our most loyal and knowledgeable supporters to hear more about the details of our work, and actually get involved by meeting the staff that make it all happen.
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“It’s great to be joined by so many of Brooke’s friends and together, with their continued support, we can move closer to our vision of a world in which working horses, donkeys and mules are free from suffering.”
Mr Stewart added: “Horses have been a huge part of my life for as long as I can remember. So I was honoured when Petra asked me to come on board as patron of Brooke.
“Since that time, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed a close friendship with this wonderful organisation. By joining as a friend, you too have that opportunity, whilst making even more of an impact on a cause you’re passionate about.”