With funding from Lady Freethinker (LFT), local and non-profit partner ARAF-Plateau Dogon provided 20 former dog meat traders with life-changing farm equipment to start their new livelihoods by growing crops. cultures. They are the first of 37 other dog meat dealers to switch to a humane livelihood.
This transformation was officially marked and celebrated during a ceremony chaired by the mayor of Sébougou. The celebration included local village chiefs and other officials, according to ARAF-Plateau Dogon.
The change will save thousands of lives as former dog meat sellers in Mali abandon the trade and turn to farming for their livelihoods. Former traders also speak out against the sale and consumption of dogs.
“Lady Freethinker applauds the courage and determination of these former dog meat traders in turning to more compassionate livelihoods,” said LFT President Nina Jackel.
LFT funding goes to a quarter of a hectare of land for each farmer. It is also helping to provide supplies for growing the crops, which will include tubers, vegetables and small fruit trees with short cycles.
Most dog meat sellers are eager to quit the business and only participate in it to feed their families. By cultivating crops, they will have a sustainable means of income. The initiative benefits the whole community, where some people live on less than a dollar a day and are in dire need of resources.
This is part of a larger effort between LFT and ARAF-Plateau Dogon to help raise awareness of animal cruelty in the Ségou region of Mali, where more than 300 dogs are killed for meat every day.
Dogs are herded into villages – either taken off the streets or sold by guards who don’t want them anymore – forced to walk for days without food or water, clubbed with sticks and roasted over a fire.
In addition to encouraging dog meat traders to abandon the trade, activists are going to villages to raise awareness about the campaign and encourage the humane treatment of dogs.
The dog meat trade has developed there in recent years, with Mali’s population growth and the lack of adequate food sources (in part due to the effects of climate change), according to ARAF-Plateau Dogon. .
Lady Freethinker is proud to be part of this initiative and to take this big step towards ending the dog meat trade in Mali.