Who We Are

MAWS (Maun Animal Welfare Society) is run by a small but passionate team of volunteers who are determined to improve the welfare of domestic dogs and cats across Botswana. Our aim is to help protect Botswana’s wildlife through domestic animal welfare.

Mervyn with her dogs

Mervyn Palmer has lived in Maun nearly all her life. She brought MAWS to life as The Dog Project in 1998. Raising money as she went along to pay a local vet at the time to Spay, Neuter and vaccinate dogs and cats brought to her. This gradually grew “arms and legs” or “paws and claws” and today there is a clinic within the boundary of Mervyn’s house . There is also a cottage for volunteer vets and vet nurses to stay in during their time in Maun. At the last count, Mervyn had at least 10 rescued doggies via MAWS.

A local of Maun for over 20 years, Penelope first joined MAWS ‘s fundraising committee. She became Chairman a few years later. Penelope owns two MAWS dogs and 4 MAWS cats.

Carmen is originally from Spain, where she studied environmental science, veterinary assistance of exotic animals as well as husbandry and rehabilitation of wildlife. After a few years at Mokolodo Nature Reserve in Gaborone, Carmen joined us at MAWS in February 2022 as the Clinic Administrator. 

Vasco has been with MAWS as a general clinic assistant since 2015. He also started his life with MAWS gardening for our founder Mervyn Palmer. MAWS needed another assistant and Vasco called in to see if he could help. Coming from Shakawe, he has an ever expanding family with a daughter, son, dog and a cat called Mary.

Serge joined us in Jan 2019. He came highly recommended for his mechanical and driving abilities. A year on he now does all our collecting and returning of dogs after their treatments. He also rescues dogs that need help and maintains all our various vehicles for us. Always with a smile on his face.

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