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RSPCA awards scheme celebrates five years of welfare innovation

An RSPCA awards scheme which recognises pioneering animal welfare practices among local authorities and housing providers is celebrating its fifth year.

The Community Animal Welfare Footprints (CAWF) is officially supported by the  Trading Standards Institute (TSI) and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH).

Many of the practices shared through the RSPCA’s Community Animal Welfare Footprints (CAWF) scheme have now been adopted by other local authorities and housing providers across England and Wales – raising the standards of animal welfare.

Since CAWF was launched in 2008 it has grown from having just under 70 entries in its first year to more than 130 submissions from local authorities and housing providers in 2011. 

Piers Claughton, RSPCA senior local government advisor, said: “When CAWF was launched five years ago, it was to reward those pioneering local authorities and housing providers who were thinking outside the box, or had simply introduced effective practices that improved animal welfare.
“It is encouraging that not only has the scheme done just that, but good practice is now being shared between organisations, to the benefit of animals across England and Wales.
“Hopefully there will be even more forward-thinking schemes entered into this year’s awards, so that even more progress can be made in the name of animal welfare.”

There are four animal welfare footprints to apply for as part of CAWF. These are:

  • Stray dog services
  • Housing
  • Contingency planning
  • Animal welfare principles

 There are three different levels of achievement available in each category – gold, silver and bronze – which have progressively more demanding criteria. Organisations will be presented with their gold, silver or bronze CAWF logo that they are able to use on their website and letterheads for the following 12 months

Entries will also be considered for the four prestigious Innovator Awards, which are presented to the organisations the judges feel have demonstrated effective new methods or achieved outstanding success in improving animal welfare.

The four Innovator Awards are broken down into categories including Unitary and County Innovator, District and Borough Innovator, Wales Unitary Innovator and Housing and Multi-agency Innovator.

More information, including case studies of previous winning entries, is available online at The closing date for CAWF 2012 is Friday 27 July and the winners and achievers will be announced on Wednesday 12 September.


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