International Animal Rescue (IAR) has recently launched an emergency appeal for funds to support bear sanctuaries in India that have been hit hard by a second wave of the COVID-19 virus.
Some members of the animal care teams at the center in Agra and Bannerghatta are seriously ill with the virus and are now in isolation. In addition, widespread disruption to transport systems is making it increasingly difficult to procure food and medical supplies for the bears and sanctuary staff.
A message from Kartick Satyanarayan, Co-Founder of International Animal Rescues’ partner Wildlife SOS who manages the sanctuaries in India, describes just how desperate the situation is.
“The dark Covid cloud is taking a severe toll with people dying all around us. There are no beds available in hospitals for Covid patients and no space left to bury the dead. I am extremely worried by the current situation. At Wildlife SOS we’re in desperate need of help.
“At the bear rescue centers in Agra and Bangalore, we’re facing a lot of problems on the ground. Our dedicated and committed staff are doing their best to work courageously, but several members have tested positive for Covid. We’ve had to quarantine these staff for their own safety and also to prevent exposure to other staff and the animals. We desperately need three or four oxygen concentrators and about 10 oxygen cylinders as critical care need for our staff. Doctors have advised us that we will be facing a medical disaster if we can’t get a hold of this equipment.
“We already have a strict curfew and lockdown imposed in Delhi. We are having to use animal ambulances to move critical medicines and food supplies for the animals at the bear rescue centers. We urgently need to stock up on food and medicines to last us at least for the next 3 or 4 months so we can survive the imminent lockdowns that are looming over us in Agra and Bannerghatta,” said Satyanarayan in a statement.
International Animal Rescue is calling on supporters and caring members of the public to help them raise funds to buy oxygen concentrators and enough food and medical supplies to last the coming months.
“We rescued the bears before – now they’re in need of our help again. Ever since they were taken from the wild, the bears have been forced to rely on people for everything. When they were dancing on the streets, they were at the mercy of their cruel handlers. And since they’ve been rescued, they’ve depended on us for all their food and care. Thanks to our supporters, we’ve never had to let them down,” said Alan Knight OBE, IAR’s Chief Executive.
“I’m confident that our loyal and generous supporters will rise to the occasion again today and help get the bears and staff at the sanctuaries through this deadly crisis,” concluded Knight.
Please consider making a donation to International Animal Rescue HERE!
You can also donate to Wildlife SOS HERE!
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