Video: Ann Widdecombe on her trip to Mauritania

Former politician and long-time SPANA ambassador Ann Widdecombe has been around the globe in recent years, highlighting the troubles faced by some of the world’s 200 million working animals.

Ann has worked with SPANA in countries such as Mauritania and Egypt and has witnessed first-hand the horrific conditions these donkeys, horses and other working animals face on a daily basis.

Anne Widdecombe

Anne Widdecombe

SPANA (the Society for the Protection of Animals Abroad) operates veterinary centres and mobile clinics in places such as the capital of Mauritania, Nouakchott. Incredibly, despite its population of over one million people, the city has no water distribution system.

Instead, Nouakchott’s residents rely on 70,000 working donkeys, which have to collect and deliver water from a limited number of water points. Generally, they’ll transport up to 400 litres of water at a time to and from the city throughout the entire day. Essentially, day-to-day life in the capital depends on this vast workforce of animals.

Ann is a long-time supporter of international animal charity SPANA.

Ann has previously visited the charity’s work in Morocco and, in 2014, she toured the Giza Pyramids area in Cairo to see the plight of horses facing starvation amid the political unrest. Hundreds of carriage horses used for tourist excursions were suffering from severe malnutrition, as visitor numbers to Egypt plummeted.