Before I arrived, I decided to do some voluntary work, to be able to collect as many impressions as possible. I was sent from my hotel directly and got to know the other volunteers on the bus. On the way to the Elephant Nature Park we passed some Elephant Riding Camps, which the elephants are chained in small areas and equipped with a saddle for the next “ride” had prepared. Immediately upon arrival at Elephant Nature Park, it was clear to me that animal welfare is paramount here and that the animals are cared for peacefully and without forced live interactions.
On the day of arrival, all volunteers were welcomed by the project coordinators and informed about the procedure, the tasks and especially the rules of conduct towards the animals.
Elephant Nature Park is home not only to elephants, but also around 1000 dogs, 2000 cats and many other rescued animals. Every day, the individual volunteer groups were assigned to various tasks. Here is a short overview of my tasks during my stay:
In their spare time they could help out with the dogs and cats. I walked the dogs every day, who were paraplegics due to car accidents, among other things. Afterwards I also visited the cats.
The area for the cats is called “Cat Kingdom” and resembles a small park where you want to retreat with a book and be snuggled by a cat from all sides.
I was able to take away a lot of knowledge about animals about animal welfare for myself during my time. At the same time, I met many great people who have been supporting the Elephant Nature Park for many years and infected me directly with their commitment and passion for animal welfare.