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MAWO Initiatives

MAWO Initiatives

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Meru Animal Welfare Organization (MAWO) is a nonprofit animal-welfare organization working in the Meru region of Tanzania. Within our culture and society, we fight for these five freedoms of animals:

Freedom from hunger and thirst

Freedom from discomfort

Freedom from pain, injury and disease

Freedom from fear and distress

Freedom to express normal behavior

Our Mission is to protect all animals from torture, abuse, cruelty, diseases, and killing.


Our Vision is for animals to be respected as living creatures who experience pain, fear, and suffering.


Our Aim is to promote, improve, and develop any matter concerning the protection of animals and understanding of animals among the people of Tanzania without gaining any profit.



In 2009, MAWO Founder and President, Johnson Lyimo and other community leaders were brought together to discuss their shared concern for the horrific animal treatment they were seeing in their communities. By 2010 they had completed a baseline survey to study the greatest needs for animal welfare in the Meru region. MAWO was created to address these problems so as to better the lives of both animals and humans in this area. 


Since then, MAWO has played a significant role as a champion for animal welfare throughout the Meru District and Tanzania. “Animal welfare” to us means the concern for the well-being of an animal’s physical and mental state and involves the mitigation of avoidable suffering, injury, pain, fear, or distress resulting from unnatural behavior while used for work, sport, companionship, research or food. The ethical basis for MAWO’s policies stems from looking beyond the conservation of species to the welfare of individual animals.


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Johnson Lyimo

President and Founder of MAWO

Johnson Lyimo is Founder and President of Meru Animal Welfare Organization based in Usa River, Arusha in Tanzania. He has 10 years extensive experience working in the field of animal welfare in Tanzania.
Johnson is on the Advisory Committee for the Coalition for African Animal Welfare Organizations based in Cape Town, South Africa. He is also a Tanzanian representative for the International Organization for Animal Protection (OIPA) , an NGO affiliated with the United Nations Department of Public Information and the United Nations Economic and Social Council.


Dr. Dauson Katurisa

Program Manager and Veterinarian Surgeon


Irene Antony

Community and Field Officer

Irene Antony is a Veterinarian Paraprofessional who's passionate about animal welfare, public health and the One Health approach. She believes that in order improve the welfare of our animals, we need to be keen on our management and husbandry practices, as these are the major causes of animal cruelty. She advocates for animals as sentient and not just keeping them for economic gain. "In this age of various zoonotic diseases, it is of utmost importance to provide the five freedoms as well as other necessities."

Dr. Calvin Solomon Onyango

Training and Education Advisor

Dr. Onyango works in many organizations as an animal welfare champion with many years of experience serving animals, linking animal welfare to improved human welfare. He has worked in advocacy and research on both animal welfare and sustainable development, as well as given many presentations on this intersection of topics at conferences and universities. Dr. Onyango currently works in the following capacities: The OIE Animal Welfare Point for Keyna, Africa Coordinator for the WS Vets United Project, Partner Representative for WTG in animal Welfare Projects, among other roles and responsibilities in national and international organizations.


Victor Marco

Assistant Administrative Officer

Ellygiver Lema

Community and Field Officer


Nicholas Mushi

Dog Handler and Harness Expert



Pendo Elia – Chair Person


Dr Dauson Katurisa


Sebath Bwanga


Christopher Njau

Delvina Minja


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Danielle Williams

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Alexis Dorn
Vice President


Liam Alfred

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Nancy Peterson

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Caitlin O'Shea

Pink Blossom

Kathy Rudge

Pink Blossom

Meredith Ayan

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