Poster Presentation 64th International Conference of the Wildlife Disease Association 2015

AMRRIC: A grass-roots One Health approach (#134)

Bonny Cumming 1
  1. AMRRIC - Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities, Darwin, NT, Australia

AMRRIC is a national not-for-profit charity that uses a One Health approach to coordinate veterinary and education programs in Indigenous communities.  By working with remote Indigenous communities to improve the health and wellbeing of their pets, we are helping to create healthier, safer and happier communities.

Whilst our focus is on companion animal health and wellbeing, the geographic isolation of the communities with which we work, as well as the free-roaming nature of dogs and cats in these communities means that our work has direct relevance to local wildlife and its conservation.  Some of the ways that our work supports wildlife populations include:

·      Working with communities, building capacity and general knowledge around animal health and zoonoses;

·      Working with local ranger groups and regional councils, providing educational resources about the impact of feral cats on the local environment, as well as the importance of good cat management;

·      Educating community members about the reproductive and social differences between dogs and dingos, thereby helping to ensure that interactions between domestic dogs and local dingo populations are minimised;

·      Supporting and training local Indigenous animal management workers to recognise and report exotic diseases such as rabies and old-world screw-worm fly.

AMRRIC has a strong academic focus and 
has collaborated on a wide variety of research topics. We assist ethically designed and culturally appropriate research by helping communities to determine the questions they would like solved, linking communities to researchers, advising on appropriate research design for remote Indigenous communities, and collecting and providing samples from the animals with which we work. AMRRIC aims to encourage and facilitate appropriate and culturally sensitive research programs to underpin and inform effective animal management and community health programs. We welcome enquiries from researchers in regards to research proposals.

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