How did you become a SPANA vet?
I have loved animals since I was a child. From an early age, I always knew that I wanted to become a vet. When I was in high school, I got a chance to visit a vet school, tour the facilities and learn more about what it takes to become a vet, which inspired me even more. While I was studying, I first heard about SPANA’s work, which sounded amazing, so in my summer holidays, I started volunteering with them. I graduated with a degree in veterinary medicine in 2010. After working at a vet college for a year, I heard that SPANA was looking to fill a veterinary vacancy and jumped at the opportunity! After seven years with SPANA, I became the Ethiopia Project Leader, and have been overseeing all SPANA activities for the last four years.
What is the hardest part of your job?
Every month, I travel with a team of vets, vet technicians and farriers to some of the more remote parts of Ethiopia to deliver mobile clinics. The travel is difficult, with hours spent driving on bumpy roads and working long and physically-gruelling hours. Due to the fact that some of the places we work are so rural, we often depend on government vet facilities to deliver SPANA’s free vet care. But in some places, we have really limited equipment like pens to handle more aggressive animals, so the job can be a dangerous one! Most equine patients are well-behaved, but a sick or scared animal can be unpredictable, so we have to be careful when providing treatment and take extra precautions to make sure SPANA staff are safe while on the job.