Hope and Beyond: An Organization saving Snakes and Human Deaths by Snakebites

About the “Hope and Beyond”

Hope and Beyond is a famous wildlife conservation Organization in Jaipur, Rajasthan, India. The social organization is committed to conserving wildlife. Their mission is to provide greater insight and appreciation of the natural world and the ways to protect it.

They help to provide a haven to all animals in the wilderness. They have a team of committed, trained, and empathetic volunteers who excel in handling and rescuing reptiles and animals of feline, canine and avian families. Hope and Beyond strives to inculcate sensitivity about the importance of wildlife fauna among the masses, especially the youth, by organizing awareness programs, seminars, and symposiums.

Their team of volunteers and doctors also assist animals in distress by going on rescues at any hour of the day and treating them till they are fit to be released back to the wild.

Focus Areas

The Wildlife NGO from Jaipur focuses on issues of urgent concerns like

  • Wildlife Conservation
  • Climate Change
  • Habitat Restoration
  • Conservation Education
  • Wildlife Rescues
  • Wildlife Research
  • Plantation Drives
  • Environment Protection
  • Mitigating Illegal Wildlife Crimes
  • Saving Water Bodies
  • Mitigating Human-Animal Conflicts
  • Technical Advancement of Field Staff

Rescuing Snakes and Saving Humankind

The Pink city Jaipur witnesses encounters of local residents with snakes regularly. This has become a matter of top concern and conservation of snakes has been undertaken scientifically by the NGO’s team. The NGO believes that Snakes play a massive role in our ecosystems. They maintain a high level of biodiversity, which is extremely necessary for all life on Earth. Without the presence of snakes, the number of species of prey would rise to an unnatural level, and the predators that depend on snakes would struggle to find food. Snakes also help to keep pests, such as mice and rats, in check. Hence it becomes even more important to create and spread awareness about this beautiful reptile.

A Black headed royal snake was rescued from a posh area Vaishali Nagar in Jaipur

As per the IUCN Red List of threatened species, 12 percent of the snake species are considered to be under threat ing day by day. Moreover, the population of humans is on the rise and has spread into regions that wildlife depends on. Due to this reason, human-snake conflicts are increasing. Every year, about 5.4 million snake bites occur each year, resulting in 1.8 to 2.7 million cases of envenoming. As a result of this problem, WHO considers snakebite as an issue that is highly neglected as only a few efforts are made to reduce snakebites, especially in the developing countries. According to the WHO, in India alone, an average of 58,000 people die because of snakebites per year (Read about top 4 venomous Snakes in India here), and their population is declining. Human- Snake Conflict is the most common conflict in our country because of human encroachment into forests and urbanization.

For most people, the solution to snakebite deaths is to kill the snake. Some snakes are killed even if they pose no real danger to human life. Hope and Beyond, with the help of awareness programs, aims to deliver a vital message to the masses, which is, ‘Snakes will not kill you if you do not kill them.’

Spectacled cobra (Naja Naja)

The snake rescue team at Hope and Beyond, is a team of trained professionals and knows technical ways of rescue. The NGO has brought together the snake rescuers from different districts of Rajasthan and has formed a rescuers federation which runs across the entire state.

The Rajasthan Rescuers Federation was set up in collaboration with Rajasthan Forest Department in 2017 as 17 snake rescuers lost their lives in Maharashtra in a short span of 3 years while rescuing. To avoid the same bizarre situation in Rajasthan, the NGO decided to train all the rescuers and even equipped them with professional tools to carry out the task efficiently. Although it was a challenging task to bring rescuers from different districts under one roof and train them for this purpose, but with the hard work and perseverance of the founding members, it was accomplished.

Team is washing the Royal Snake to clean the mud and to check the injuries due to human conflict

The federation initially began with a workshop which was attended by the rescuers from 14 districts of Rajasthan. The workshop was also attended by dignitaries like the Chief Wildlife Warden, Mr. G.V. Reddy, and others. During the workshop, theoretical knowledge, as well as live demonstrations of snake rescues, were given without causing any harm to the snakes. In the end, all the trained rescuers were added to a WhatsApp group to be in touch with one another and to share updates about their daily rescues.

The second workshop was organized in 2018, and rescuers from 18 districts of Rajasthan attended it this time. At present, there are rescuers trained by the Rajasthan Rescuers Federation in more than 23 districts. This small initiative taken by a few has resulted in no snakebites to rescuers.

Wolf Snake rescued by Team Hope

Presently, the federation gets regular calls from different regions that are successfully attended. Continuous efforts are being made to carry out the mission of the federation by reaching and rescuing all the animals who are in distress and need help. Because of the large network of rescuers, the organization is able to run a 24×7 helpline number and their rescuers are very dedicated to take calls on a regular basis.

The helpline is handled by volunteers who identifies the snake type and assesses the situation before the rescuers reaches the rescue site. The helpline volunteer convinces the caller not to harm or kill the snake and keep a constant watch for any disturbance in the situation till the rescuer arrives. A snake is only rescued if it has entered inside a building or if it poses a threat to a person or vice versa. Our rescuers also make people aware of snakes and snake myths after the rescue is done.

At times, Venomous snakes such as cobras can bite a human before the NGO is contacted. Their volunteers help the family and the person who is bitten by guiding them to nearest hospital with the possibility of treatment. The NGO also coordinates with the doctors in the hospital and try to make necessary arrangements for the patient even before their arrival. Their proactive approach and way of dealing with snake bite cases has helped saving many lives in Rajasthan.

India is a country where snakes are worshiped, and festivals like Nag-Panchami are celebrated, but on the contrary, when people encounter snakes in their lives, their spontaneous reaction is to kill them. It is a well-known fact that snakes intimidate humans. The rescuers at Hope and Beyond, therefore started snakebite mitigation programs where they educate people to understand that not all snakes are venomous and that even a venomous snake will not attack humans unless it feels threatened. They organize awareness programs for ordinary people to educate them about how to mitigate or avoid snakebites and how to deal with them in a proper manner. This has been extremely beneficial for both the commoners as well as for the snakes.

Extend the Support

Hope and Beyond have committed itself to make the world a better place to live in by mitigating the conflict which surfaces from time to time between humans and wildlife. It strives tirelessly to set this balance right by indulging in timely intervention whereby the said conflict may be taken care of. The aim above of the Organization gets materialized by the untiring, sincere, and honest efforts of its team of ever-enthusiastic rescuers and veterinary staff.

Hence your continuous and generous support is required for our administrative functioning as well as for the various projects going on presently in unison with their objectives. Your kind donation will encourage the NGO team to keep pursuing their goals with vigor and zest.

Please visit https://hopeandbeyond.in/donate-now/

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