Fred Midikila: The man protecting Kenya’s pets
Fred Midikila is the Head Investigator at the Kenya Society for the Protection and Care of Animals (KSPCA), a job he has taken to heart for the 25 years he has worked in the organization.
“It makes me happier when I rescue an animal from suffering, into good hands. So, it makes me really like my work,” he told Arit Okpo, the host of CNN International’s African Voices Changemakers programme.
The KSPCA was founded over 100 years ago and is the only animal welfare charity in Kenya protecting animals from neglect and abuse. Midikila talks about their important rehabilitation work, “Most of the animals when we bring them in, they don't believe people, because of what they have gone through. We have to make them understand that not all humans are bad, but some could be good to them,” he added.
One of his main roles is educating school children about the correct ways to look after pets. He discusses this community education effort, “We have the younger generation whom now, most of them are learning that animals also have a feeling and they need to be treated kindly.”
In addition to protecting and educating, Midikila and his team provide critical services such as responding to animal welfare calls and running spay and neuter programmes. Much of this work takes places in Nairobi’s informal settlements, where families often struggle to afford the cost of proper veterinary care. Midikila explains the services they offer at no cost, “KSPCA we go to areas and try to help the community there by doing free vaccinations, free neutering and free treatment of diseases.”
Although operations are focused primarily on Nairobi, the KSPCA deals with cases across the country. Midikila hopes that in the future the charity will be able to expand further, “Our ambition is to see this animal shelter spreads all over to every corner of the country, so that the welfare of animal is really a level standard that we need.”
Midikila has adopted two dogs from the KSPCA himself, and although he would like more, he tells the programme that he must follow his own message that he gives to pet owners, “If I had finances I would really love to have as many animals as I could. But now when I also go to the slum area and tell them, keep only the maximum number of animals that you can manage, that's what I am trying to do.”