A charity that runs a dog pound and welfare centre in northern Borneo is appealing for vet nurses to volunteer there for six weeks in early 2015.

International Aid for the Protection and Welfare of Animals (IAPWA) took over the running of the pound in Kota Kinabalu, northern Borneo in July.

It has introduced more humane methods of catching stray dogs and organises neutering campaigns and basic veterinary care, supported by volunteer vets and VNs from the UK.

IAPWA founder Nicky Stevens said the charity needed three VNs to help in the new year.

She said: “Three nurses are going out in March on nine-month placements and we have another one with us in January.

“But that means we need three more – one for a total of six weeks, covering January and a couple of weeks of February, and another two nurses for eight to ten weeks, covering January and February. The project is going tremendously well and I believe we are making made a real difference.

“From January, we are expanding and will have two vets there, which means the VNs joining us then will be involved in a greater range of services; not only TNR (trap/neuter/return). It’s a really exciting time for us.”

The volunteers also carry out education projects in the community to encourage responsible pet ownership and will be linking with other animal sanctuaries in the area to try to help as many animals as possible.

IAPWA covers the cost of flights for volunteers who work for nine-months or longer. VNs and vets on shorter placements pay for flights themselves. The charity provides free accommodation in a smart, five-bedroom, four-bathroom house with air conditioning, and pays the utility bills.

The volunteers also have the use of a vehicle and IAPWA pays for petrol. They have to pay for their own food, but Miss Stevens said most found £15 covered the weekly cost.

IAPWA is opening up the project to short-term volunteers so VNs will be able to go for two weeks.

Miss Stevens said: “I realise nurses may want to help, but not everyone can go out for longer periods. We offer a great opportunity to people to visit a wonderful part of the world, see some really interesting sights, such as the orangutans, and help support our work.”

The cost for a two-week stay is £750 (excluding flights) and includes the accommodation.

To find out more, or to volunteer, go to www.iapwa.org or email enquiries@iapwa.org

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