Shining World Compassion Award: The UK’s Secret World Wildlife Rescue    Part 2
 
Shining World Compassion Award: The UK’s Secret World Wildlife Rescue  Part 2
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Everywhere in the world, we can observe and be touched by acts of kindness. People from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures extend themselves beyond the call of duty to help others unconditionally. Through their noble deeds, humanity as a whole is elevated.

To commend virtuous actions and encourage more people to be inspired by their examples, Supreme Master Ching Hai has lovingly created a series of awards, including the Shining World Leadership Award, Shining World Compassion Award, Shining World Hero and Heroine Awards, Shining World Honesty Award, Shining World Protection Award, Shining World Intelligence Award, and Shining World Inventor Award, to recognize some of the most exemplary, generous, caring, and courageous people who walk amongst us.

Secret World Wildlife Rescue in Somerset, UK specializes in the rescue, rehabilitation and eventual release of sick, injured and orphaned wild animals. On average, this marvelous group helps over 4,000 of our animal friends each year. Secret World has the distinction of being the only 24-hour a day, seven-day a week wildlife rescue center in South West England. As part of their educational outreach program, Secret World staff members visit local schools to help children learn about nature and encourage them to protect wildlife.

Founded in 1992 by Pauline and Derek Kidner, Secret World has gained national recognition for its work, winning the British Broadcasting Corporation’s (BBC’s) Animal Country Award in 1995, and has also been featured on numerous TV programs in the UK. In 2001 Ms. Kidner was nominated for the BBC Animal Award because of her great contributions to the cause of animal welfare. For its tender, caring work with animals in need, Supreme Master Ching Hai also honored Secret World Wildlife Rescue with the Shining World Compassion Award.

It’s just grown and grown. We now actually deal with between four- and five-thousand wildlife animals every year. We have a wonderful, dedicated team of staff which makes sure that care is always of a very good standard. But also they are supported by many volunteers who we couldn’t run without. And they help us in many ways because obviously it’s not just looking after the animals, it’s helping with the maintenance. So, we’re very lucky that we’re supported by volunteers with all that we do.

Let’s now meet some of Secret World’s fascinating residents.

Our first stop is the home of the sanctuary’s friendly foxes, who, because they are tame, have become permanent residents.

We've got a nice, big pen here. These are foxes that that have been people's pets, and then they realized that they don't make very good pets. But they've got a nice lot of space here. They've got a shed that they can go into. But they also can dig their own sets if they want to, to go in as well. So they can do all the natural things that they would normally do.

We now move on to the facility’s avian residents, including a loving bird friend who lives there full time.

This one is Twinks. And she’s a Tawny (owl) that somebody kept as a pet for eight years and then didn't want her anymore. And she was passed on to us. But she's lovely. She's so vocal and loves going out and meeting people, which is really great.

And we've got some nice volunteers that come in, and even on days when they don't go out to schools, they come and they take them out, and walk them around the fields and different things, because they’re what we call imprinted birds. They’re birds that think that they are human beings. So they want human contact. And that's what we're able to give them, which is lovely.

Twinks, what you doing, Twinks?

Other birds have temporary homes at the sanctuary, and when the time is right, some will be released by the staff back into their native habitats, while others will leave on their own.

These are different animals that come in to us for different reasons. They’re ones that people don't want and birds that suddenly appear on reserves where they shouldn't be. In fact, that's where the turkeys have come from, the two female turkeys. And also when we get lots of baby ducklings, very often we put them into this pen, and they can fly off when they're ready to go during the summer. And we find that many of them do in fact fly back in the winter, because they know there's going to be a food source here. So that's why there are so many Mallards out there.

Injured and sick animals brought to the center are splendidly cared for by nurse Sara Cohen. One of her current patients is a little Hedgehog.

I'm the veterinary nurse and the animal welfare manager at Secret World. And I basically treat the patients that come in, minor operations and procedures if they need anything. And this is pretty much where we work at the moment.

So we're going to have a look at a little Hedgehog that came in earlier on. He seems to have a wound in his back. Someone just found him in the garden last night. So we're going to get him out, give him an anesthetic and clean his wound up. We've had loads of Hedgehogs in this year. Through the winter, we’ve probably got about 70 or so Hedgehogs. And they just come in for various different reasons; underweight, maybe not going to survive the winter or hibernation.

But this one, as you can see, he’s got a little wound on the back. Yes, we’re going to give him a light anesthetic, because the problem with Hedgehogs is they roll up into a ball, so tight, and you can’t actually access anything to check them over. So you need to give them an anesthetic in order to be able to check the legs and that there is no other injuries. But also this probably would be quite sore to clean up if we didn’t give him an anesthetic. So now he’s come around from the anesthetic.

What we’ll to do is we’re going to pop him into the hospital and we’re going to carry on treating the wound every day, keeping it nice and clean and also put him on some antibiotics for a few days, just in case there’s some infection. But he looks quite happy now. There we go.

A beautiful, young swan or cygnet needing some loving attention and care also arrived at Secret World Wildlife Rescue.

This is a little cygnet that came in with an injury underneath his wing. We’re not really sure what’s happened to him, but it’s quite a nasty wound. We’ve been treating him again trying to get it to heal nicely. But he seems to have got a little swelling on his face as well at the moment. See, he had some wounds here, just on the side of his face, just in there, probably like fishing line or something that’s sort of scissored across the mouth. So that one’s healed alright. It’s just a little bit soft, isn’t it? Just there, it feels a little bit puffy, but nothing to be worried about.

I’ve got a little bat. And he is a Noctule bat, so although he’s quite small, he is actually very big, which sounds a bit strange. But he’s the largest type of British bat that we actually get in our countryside. So during the winter he would usually be hibernating.

He’s one of the three mammals that hibernate in the UK. So he would be usually fast asleep. But because I keep him indoors, in my house rather than outside, that means that he’s not hibernating. And he’s also being fed every day. So that’s why he’s still with us at the moment, if you know what I mean.

I’ve had him since he’s been a baby. So he’s one that I look after at home, that I use to talk to children about, and talk to visitors about as well.

Please join us again tomorrow for the concluding episode in our two-part series on Secret World Wildlife Rescue, which will feature further excerpts from our interview with the kind Ms. Pauline Kidner and the presentation of the Shining World Compassion Award to this wonderful organization.

For more details on Secret World Wildlife Rescue, please visit

Precious viewers, thank you for your presence today on our program. Coming up next is Enlightening Entertainment, after Noteworthy News. May Providence forever protect all animals.
Everywhere in the world, we can observe and be touched by acts of kindness. People from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures extend themselves beyond the call of duty to help others unconditionally. Through their noble deeds, humanity as a whole is elevated.

To commend virtuous actions and encourage more people to be inspired by their examples, Supreme Master Ching Hai has lovingly created a series of awards, including the Shining World Leadership Award, Shining World Compassion Award, Shining World Hero and Heroine Awards, Shining World Honesty Award, Shining World Protection Award, Shining World Intelligence Award, and Shining World Inventor Award, to recognize some of the most exemplary, generous, caring, and courageous people who walk amongst us.

We’ve got a wound under here. You can just about see. We’re not really sure what happened, whether he (perhaps) hit an electricity cable. And we’ve stitched up what we can do, but he’s doing quite well.

Secret World Wildlife Rescue in Somerset, UK specializes in the rescue, rehabilitation and eventual release of sick, injured and orphaned wild animals. On average, this marvelous group helps over 4,000 of our animal friends each year. Secret World has the distinction of being the only 24-hour a day, seven-day a week wildlife rescue center in South West England. As part of their educational outreach program, Secret World staff members visit local schools to help children learn about nature and encourage them to protect wildlife.

The sanctuary was established in 1992 by Pauline and Derek Kidner, who both care deeply about animals. The wildlife at the center often need intensive care. Sick animals require regular doses of medicine, wounded ones may require surgery and dressing changes and babies need to be fed constantly.

In addition, healed animals being prepared for release need food and all such facilities require regular maintenance. Fortunately, the loving staff and a team of over 600 dedicated volunteers are always willing to help.

We’ve actually gone up now to nine animal carers here at Secret World and that’s because we have a shift that runs from 8 AM to 5 PM and then another one that runs from 2 PM to 10 PM and there’s an emergency service that covers all the way through the night. We have a very, very small turnover of staff, so most of those have actually been with us for at least five to seven years, if not even more.

And we’re very lucky that we’ve now been joined by Sara Cowen who has been involved with wildlife for over 20 years herself. And she’s a qualified veterinary nurse and has huge experience in wildlife. And although she’s only been with us since May, it still has upped the care that we can give animals, and it’s really been lovely to see how she has progressed and taught our staff similarly how to do different things. So yes, we have a stable staffing and I think that means that you’re able to give better quality care.

Moreover, the center is able to care for a wide range of species due to its expert staff and diverse facilities.

We’re very lucky in Somerset. It’s actually got a huge variety of wildlife here and a very high concentration too. So we go right from the smallest pipistrelle bats, up to the Roe (deer) and the Red deer as well. And that really goes across the species of birds. We do hares. We do rabbits. Particularly (we care for) badgers and foxes. Stoats and weasels sometimes occasionally come in as well. (We get) lots of mice.

And as far as we’re concerned it doesn’t matter how tiny things are. We believe that they have the right to help if they need our help and the aim is always to get them back to the wild. And of course because we’re close to the sea, as well as the garden birds and the ordinary birds in the countryside, we get a lot of sea birds as well. And our best thing in 2007 was we actually had an albatross. So the variety is absolutely incredible.

Because the main goal of Secret World is to ensure that the animals are safe, cared for and allowed to rehabilitate in an environment that closely simulates their natural habitat, its grounds are rarely open to the public. But when the sanctuary does open its doors, the response is remarkable.

It is a very special place. It’s a very old farm. It’s over 300 years old. It’s got a lovely atmosphere to it. We are only open 19 days a year. But we have about 20,000 people through on those days.

Over the years, Secret World Wildlife Rescue has built many types of facilities to meet the diverse needs of its animal guests.

We’re very lucky that as well as having facilities for veterinary care and for the casualty pens where they need heat and they need support, over the years we’ve been able to build large seclusion pens where we can put buzzards or owls. We’ve got garden aviaries where we can let those birds go once they’ve had a certain amount of time in the aviaries. And in fact with the birds, we have aviaries around in different people’s gardens so that we can involve our volunteers very much with what we do.

Many animals understand and appreciate the fact that the wonderful people at Secret World are there to save their lives and nurture them. The following story illustrates this clearly.

One of the things that we always do here at Secret World is we rescue, we rehabilitate and then we release and sometimes it takes a passage of time to do that. But then occasionally you get an incident where we did a year ago where a farmer came and told us that he had two Roe Bucks that were caught by their antlers in some sheep electric netting.

And Simon, who is my son, was able to attend and to eventually take the netting off their antlers. And because they were still fine, it was only a matter that they were caught and he was able to just let them go. But what was so fascinating was that the very first one really fought Simon, was really obviously very, very scared of him. And eventually he let him go very carefully, because their antlers are very pointed.

But the second one, seeing what happened, then stood absolutely still so that Simon could take the electric fencing off of his antlers. And when those sorts of things happen and wildlife knows that you’re helping them and they show that they know that you’re helping them, that really does give you a tingle.

It’s quite impressive to see.

For their tireless devotion to caring for thousands of wild animals each year, Supreme Master Ching Hai honored Secret World Wildlife Rescue with the Shining World Compassion Award. Our local Association members presented the Award to Ms. Kidner along with a beautiful, framed letter from Supreme Master Ching Hai, from which the following is an excerpt.

It is with great pleasure and gratitude that we present to Secret World Wildlife Rescue the Shining World Compassion Award. Secret World Wildlife Rescue's heart-touching endeavors extend to over 4,000 animals in need each year, providing non-stop nurturing care and rescue services 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The scale of this operation speaks volumes about the dedication and loving commitment of your saintly personnel, people who give their utmost to bring new hope, healing and happiness to the blessed animals that come to you. .

For your outstanding selflessness and uncompromising devotion to the precious animals in your care, for the love and warmth you give them, and for being dedicated and noble role models, we hereby applaud and celebrate the compassionate deeds of Secret World Wildlife Rescue, with special thanks to Mrs. Pauline Kidner. With Great Honor, Love and Blessings, Supreme Master Ching Hai.

That’s lovely. Thank you very much indeed! That's beautiful!

It is everybody working together that makes it all happen. Thank you very much indeed.

Secret World also received a selection of Supreme Master Ching Hai’s DVDs, CDs, and books, including her #1 international best-sellers “The Birds In My Life,” “The Dogs In My Life” and “The Noble Wilds.” In addition, Supreme Master Ching Hai made a contribution of £10,000 to Secret World Wildlife Rescue to help further their compassionate endeavors.

I hope that Master Ching Hai understands just how much that means to us. The fact that we've been acknowledged for the work that we do is really lovely. And I just know that it's going to lift the spirits of the staff. And obviously the money is going to make such a lot of difference to us. It means that we can carry on helping animals and stopping suffering. Thank you very much!

Approximately three weeks after the Award presentation, Secret World volunteers rescued over 30 cold and hungry swans from a frozen waterway on the Somerset Levels, an area near the center.

After learning of this wonderful deed, Supreme Master Ching Hai generously contributed additional funds in the form of US$10,000 to Secret World Wildlife Rescue to further support their compassionate endeavors.

Thank you very much indeed. It means an awful lot because even for the rescue, you can tell that we wouldn’t run without volunteers. Some of the volunteers actually went to cross the river on their stomachs on the ice to get a rope across. And we actually managed to rescue 21 swans on that one day and we literally had swan hot water bottles, all the way down the van and all the way back up the other side. And over subsequent days, we had a further 13 swans that came in. And we were able to keep them here (for) about 7 to 10 days, feed them up so that they've got their condition back again so they were good and strong.

And this Award really did make the volunteers and the staff happy because they felt that they were really being acknowledged for all the work that they do. Please thank the Supreme Master for her kindness. We do appreciate it.

Ms. Pauline Kidner and all the staff and volunteers at Secret World Wildlife Rescue, we are deeply grateful for your commitment to safeguarding the lives of wild animals. Through your efforts you provide shining examples of love and compassion and beautiful role models for the world. May you continue creating a bridge of warm friendship between animals and humans in the years to come.

For more details on Secret World Wildlife Rescue, please visit

Kind viewers, thank you for joining us on today’s program. Up next is Enlightening Entertainment after Noteworthy News here on Supreme Master Television. Blessed be all the noble individuals who save the lives of animals by adopting the organic, vegan diet.
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