Cover art for podcast other5billion: intriguing animal histories

other5billion: intriguing animal histories

9 EpisodesProduced by Olga PavlovskyWebsite

What have the animals done for us? More than you might realise! Join your host, Olga from the mountains, as she uncovers the history of animals... and us.

33:49

200 Million Organic Trucks, Tractors and Taxis

Working animals. There are currently 200 million horses, donkeys, mules, camels and elephants serving us as trucks, tractors and taxis all over the world. Some are "owned" and some are "rented" by people who derive an income from their animals. The human depend on the animals for their livelihood and vice versa.

While many of us are thinking about whether our next car runs on petrol or electricity, hundreds of millions of people are still taking the "organic" option when it comes to their transport. Taking good care of working equines is the subject of this episode.

In this episode we speak with Melissa Liszewski. Melissa has spent her entire career helping to improve the living conditions of working animals across several continents.

While we were recording this episode, I must admit that I was quite emotional. The reason behind that was realising just how many animals are still working hard for us today, since it's not something I see often in my neck of the woods. I was also struck at the high number that are being helped by organisations like Brooke, IFAW and SPANA, which we discuss in the episode.

As they say, every cloud has a silver lining. During our conversation I found out how professionals are breaking down the issues into actionable steps that improve the conditions for working animals. Millions of them. For instance, Melissa tells us about a shelter for working equines at a market in Ethiopia, which started out as a place where animals could rest while their human families shopped. It now runs as a round the clock equine care centre, complete with an educational programme. This was the first time I have heard about something like this!

I think you’ll agree by the time you finish the episode that Melissa is someone who embodies what this podcast is designed to convey - that the human species depends so much on what other animals have done for us. In many ways, we would not have thrived without the help of working equines.

Further, I hope what you hear in this episode will help you to see the next working horse, donkey or mule that you pass in a little bit of a different light. Perhaps you might take on the advice that Melissa shares and do your part in making sure that animal is getting good care. As you know, all domesticated animals depend completely on humans, and so we are wholly responsible for their treatment.

Episode cover photo credit: Mae Tortajada-Suils

 

About Melissa Liszewski
Melissa is a Senior Program Manager in Stakeholder & Community Engagement. Her passion is delivering animal welfare, sustainability and social impact in the communities she works with.

Melissa is currently working at IFAW as a Senior Program Manager, Community Engagement. She is also a Board Trustee at SPANA. Before now, Melissa has worked at the Brooke and the Animal Welfare Institute, among other animal welfare organisations. It's a career that has seen Melissa help thousands of animals gain improved living conditions all over the world. In turn, Melissa's work has helped the humans working with those animals prosper.

This article by Melissa on donkey welfare in Kenya is an eye opener into her work and what she has learned during her studies and career, it's very much a worthwhile read.

 

Photos to accompany this episode

Melissa very kindly sent us photos from several trips around the world to illustrate what we discuss during the episode. 

Melissa Liszewski working in Pakistan, 2014. Credit: Mae Tortajada-Suils.

 

Market shelter for working equines in Ethiopia. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

Animal having a drink at the market shelter for working equines in Ethiopia. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

A Gharry taxi horse in Ethiopia. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

A donkey in Jordan. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

Working at a brick kiln in India. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

 Working at a brick kiln in India. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

 

 A boy and horse taking a break at a brick kiln in India. Credit: Melissa Liszewski.

 

More resources

For more information about working animals, please do visit the websites that were mentioned including:

IFAW
Brooke
SPANA

 

Thanks to...

Thanks again to Melissa Liszewski for joining us for this interview. Thanks also to Al McLeod who introduced us; he and Melissa were colleagues back at the Brooke. Finally, thanks to Mike Vieyra who is a mutual friend of Al and myself and I’m so grateful that you put us in touch.

Educational emoji reaction

Educational

Interesting emoji reaction

Interesting

Funny emoji reaction

Funny

Agree emoji reaction

Agree

Love emoji reaction

Love

Wow emoji reaction

Wow

Listen to other5billion: intriguing animal histories

RadioPublic

A free podcast app for iPhone and Android

  • User-created playlists and collections
  • Download episodes while on WiFi to listen without using mobile data
  • Stream podcast episodes without waiting for a download
  • Queue episodes to create a personal continuous playlist
RadioPublic on iOS and Android
Or by RSS
RSS feed
https://www.other5billion.com/feed.xml

Connect with listeners

Podcasters use the RadioPublic listener relationship platform to build lasting connections with fans

Yes, let's begin connecting
Browser window

Find new listeners

  • A dedicated website for your podcast
  • Web embed players designed to convert visitors to listeners in the RadioPublic apps for iPhone and Android
Clicking mouse cursor

Understand your audience

  • Capture listener activity with affinity scores
  • Measure your promotional campaigns and integrate with Google and Facebook analytics
Graph of increasing value

Engage your fanbase

  • Deliver timely Calls To Action, including email acquistion for your mailing list
  • Share exactly the right moment in an episode via text, email, and social media
Icon of cellphone with money

Make money

  • Tip and transfer funds directly to podcastsers
  • Earn money for qualified plays in the RadioPublic apps with Paid Listens