AAEP Lavin Cup Awarded to Christian Veterinary Mission

The Christian Veterinary Mission (CVM), a faith-based coalition of veterinarians helping poor communities around the world care for animals, has received the American Association of Equine Practitioners' (AAEP) 2012 Lavin Cup.

Known as the AAEP's equine welfare award, the Lavin Cup recognizes a non-veterinary organization or individual that has distinguished itself through service to improve the welfare of horses. Tom Juergens, DVM, an AAEP member and long-time volunteer with the mission, accepted the award at the Dec. 4 President's Luncheon at the 58th Annual Convention in Anaheim, Calif.

Established as a non-profit organization in 1976, the CVM was founded on the principle of changing communities in the third world by providing veterinary care for livestock and animals. Veterinary volunteers live in and work alongside members of impoverished communities to facilitate better care for animals and share their Christian faith through service. The CVM operates long-term mission sites in 12 countries within Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

With the leadership of AAEP members Juergens and Jim Haffner, DVM, the CVM coordinated the Fast Horse Project in Mongolia. During this annual four-day continuing education program, veterinary volunteers overcome cultural, physical and financial barriers to teach progressive and practical veterinary skills to Mongolian veterinarians. The Fast Horse Project has served as a valuable learning experience for young veterinarians and has initiated the creation of a network of volunteer veterinarians to spawn "sister" programs in Canada, Korea, the United Kingdom, Nigeria, Romania, and South Africa.

Members of the CVM have propelled the AAEP's Equitarian Initiative, presenting during Table Topic sessions at the 2009 Annual Convention and providing guidance for Equitarian projects.

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