If the shelves and cabinets, back rooms, and offices at your veterinary clinic are crammed with unused textbooks, journals, instruments, equipment, and supplies, consider donating them to veterinarians and students in foreign countries where they are needed.
The AVMA often receives calls from people interested in donating such items. The groups and individuals listed here collect for the countries specified. These donations may be tax-deductible if given to a qualified nonprofit organization, using IRS form 8283, "Noncash Charitable Contributions." Or consult a tax expert.
A contact for Veterinary Books for Africa is Erica van der Westhuizen, Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Pretoria, Private Bag X04, Onderstepoort, 0110, South Africa; phone, 27-012-5298007; erica [dot] vanderwesthuizenup [dot] ac [dot] za.
Medical Books for China International accepts veterinary and other medical textbooks and journals, as well as audiotapes, videotapes, and CD-ROMs, but they must have been published or produced between 1995 to the present. Working through the Chinese Ministry of Health, the organization serves over a thousand libraries in China. Contact Mary Zoe Phillips, 13021 E. Florence Ave., Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670-4505; phone, (800) 554-2245 or (562) 946-8774; jmpmbci [dot] com.
Bridge to Asia collects large animal textbooks, sets of journals that span at least 10 consecutive years (ending no earlier than 2004), monographs, and conference proceedings for veterinary students, veterinarians, and faculty and students at agricultural schools in China. Visit www.bridge.org for details. Contact Bridge to Asia at (415) 678-2990; asianetbridge [dot] org.
Dr. Darr Wilson, Webster, Texas, takes a cargo container of donated items when he and other veterinarians travel to Honduras to vaccinate and deworm in a remote area. Rabies control is the primary thrust. A local church group back home supports their work. They would welcome Spanish textbooks, Spanish public health information, and old horse halters and rope for leads to make halters, since the horsehair leads are abrasive. Contact Dr. Wilson at (281) 332-3418, darrwilsonprodigy [dot] net.
Dr. Srinivasan Ramanathan and other Indian veterinarians practicing in America have established a veterinary college at Jaipur, in northern India near New Delhi, and travel there to help. They welcome donations of items they can bring for the students to study large and small animal medicine, including textbooks (but not journals), clinical data, proceedings, husbandry materials, and data stored on computer disks. Contact Dr. Ramanathan before sending anything, at (425) 246-2444, or animaldrhotmail [dot] com. His address is 31014 124th Ave. S.E., Auburn, WA 98092.
Dr. Kenneth Haas coordinates donations of textbooks, journals, and surgical instruments for International Veterinary Educational Assistance, for Latvia. Contact him at 2722 Carlyle Drive, Kalamazoo, MI 49008; phone, (269) 344-3249.
To donate textbooks for distribution to veterinary students in Lithuania, Estonia, and Latvia, another contact is Dr. Donald K. Allen, 4501 Market St., Youngstown, OH 44512; donkenallpeoplepc [dot] com. He sends the books through the countries' embassies. Especially needed are basic medical, surgical, and dermatology texts, and anything illustrative, such as ophthalmology texts and color atlases to supplement limited training in canine and feline medicine. Textbooks less than 10 years old would be of most use.
The Education and Research Committee of Usmanu Danfodiyo University's Faculty of Veterinary Medicine in Nigeria requests donations and subscriptions of books, journals, publications, illustration posters and models, CD-ROMs, and other interactive learning materials. They would also welcome computers and laboratory/diagnostic materials. Items should be sent to the committee's secretary, Dr. Aminu Shittu, c/o Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Usmanu Danfodiyo University, P.M.B 2254, Sokoto-Nigeria; phone, (234) 803-6857-519; ameen_vetyahoo [dot] com.
Dr. I.H. Kathio accepts donations of textbooks and journals as well as items such as surgical instruments and suture materials to take to Pakistan. He has also traveled to other countries, including Mexico and Israel, at their request to do volunteer work. Contact Dr. Kathio at Pittston Animal Hospital, 4 O'Connell St., Pittston, PA 18640; phone, (570) 655-2412; www.kathio.com.
Dr. Susan McMillan is involved in sending supplies to the Community-Led Animal Welfare organization in Johannesburg, South Africa. A special project of The Seed Fund, CLAW helps the pet population in settlements outside Johannesburg. Some pets are abandoned; others are owned by people with AIDS. CLAW volunteers deworm, vaccinate, and spay or neuter. They ship light goods such as deworming and flea-and-tick products, sutures, and medication; currently, they also need rabies poles. Journals and textbooks are not required. Contact Dr. Susan McMillan, The Seed Fund, P.O. Box 5785, Burlington, VT 05402; sumac61msn [dot] com.