Michelle Southern BCAv
Michelle started the charity ‘Street Paws’ in 2016, operating outreach teams in 23 locations across the UK and Ireland. The charity promotes animal welfare and relieves the suffering of animals by providing free of charge veterinary care and emergency kennel space in major towns and cities, to animals owned by people who are homeless, vulnerably housed or for those who are affected by severe poverty.
The bond between a homeless person and their animal is very strong, so Street Paws is an essential service for thousands of vulnerable people. With homelessness on the rise in the UK, animals provide an essential form of companionship, often becoming the only source of unconditional love. The health benefits are immense both mentally and physically and Street Paws’ aim is to support this bond.
Michelle volunteers for over 40 hours per week, taking calls from members of the public and homeless people regarding the care of their animals, day or night. As well as this Michelle works hard to promote the charity and engage with support networks and local authorities to expand and grow the service and the awareness of it. Michelle is at present campaigning to allow dogs into temporary accommodation and hostels.