Rock My Soul is a Huge Hit

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Cruz Azul’s fundraising event ‘Rock My Soul’ proved a huge hit, raising 1532.50€ for the charity, which helps with vet bills for pet owners on low incomes and works with local communities to control feral cat colonies in a humane way. The owners of The New Arches in Los Alcázares provided the venue for the event, which was organised by John “J. J. Soulman” whose friends in the music business were keen to take part. Rock My Soul was a sell-out event and guests were treated to some great performances by super compere and DJ, Paul Allen, Roxy Housewine (Amy Winehouse Tribute), Johnny Lea and the great J. J. Soulman. Cruz Azul volunteer, Emmanuel Vadon, added some rock flair with his American Ford Galaxy which caused quite a stir when he drove in.

“We are overwhelmed by the support of our local community and we have so many people to thank who made this happen.” remarked Lyn Baines, Cruz Azul President. “Local businesses donated a total of 21 raffle prizes and, thanks to Lesley Eburne and her team, we raised 780€ on the raffle alone.” she said.

Thanks to the continuing generosity and support from the public and local businesses, the fantastic amount raised at this event and the growing success of the Donation Centre in San Javier, Cruz Azul can continue to help more pets whose owners are on low incomes and continue its ‘Trap, Neuter and Return’ campaigns. “We recently lost Sue Thomason, who was a driving force for the charity, but I think that she would be proud of the fact that we are continuing her legacy and driving forward the way she would have wanted. We are keen to move forward with other initiatives in the near future to encourage responsible pet ownership, such as sterilization, microchipping and vaccination” commented Lyn.

Cruz Azul’s Donation Centre is situated on the Avenida de la Unión in San Javier, next door to Yorkshire Linen and is open Monday to Saturday from 10.00 am until 2.00 pm. They sell clothes, accessories, jewellery, household goods, furniture, bric-a-brac and lots more, so why not pay them a visit? Even better, donate your unwanted clothes, furniture and items to show your support. Call 693 017 616 for more information.

Cruz Azul Murcia is a registered charity (No. 11.720/1a) and exists to provide veterinary care for the sick and injured pets of people in need and to promote responsible pet ownership. If you or someone you know needs help, or you would like to volunteer or donate, please call 693 017 616for more information.

First National Animal Welfare Conference Leads to Close Co-operation


Seventeen guest speakers addressed an audience of representatives from many Animal Welfare Associations at the three day National Animal Welfare Conference, PAES, held in Los Alcázares, Murcia October 16th through 18th.

They had been gathered together by three Associations – Cruz Azul, ACTIN Spain (Animal Care Treatment International Network) and SAS (San Animal Santuario) – for the purpose of finding synergy with others concerned about animal treatment here in Spain.

Lyn Baines, President of Cruz Azul and organiser of the conference, was overwhelmed by the interest not only of the speakers but also the attendees. “A lot of ex pats show concern for the way animals are treated in Spain, but I was thrilled to see the number of Spanish people who show great empathy” she said Monday. “By Sunday the speakers were calling on me to arrange a strategy meeting where we can discuss working: the lawyer, the veterinary college, the police and our three charities want to move this forward as a cohesive group with a strong voice. I’m so looking forward to having strength in numbers and thank everyone for their enthusiasm and dedication!”

One of the guest speakers, and first person to ask for the strategy meeting, was Pedro José Moratalla. Pedro is heading UPROMA, the first unit of its kind to be set up to ensure all Policia Local are aware of current legislation regarding animal welfare, so the police can deal with cases correctly.

Lyn Baines said “Pedro’s involvement is a big advancement for animal welfare in Spain; small steps but forward ones. I’d like to thank all of our guest speakers and delegates who attended. Also many thanks to Team Harmony and volunteers from Cruz Azul for helping out with registrations. Team Harmony held a raffle which raised 284€. We are very grateful to the Northerners and Barrington Dubois, all animal lovers; they gave their time free of charge to entertain our delegates. ”

We hope everyone reading this will have an interest in keeping up with National Animal Welfare – PAES – here in Spain and to do that check out our website regularly: and follow us on Facebook:ña-920051248058415/

For more information of some exciting upcoming activities within the National Animal Welfare area please contact:

PAES NATIONAL ANIMAL WELFARE CONFERENCE is an initiative created by three charities: Cruz Azul, with a mission to ensure that pets whose owners come on hard times can still continue to be responsible for their animals; ACTIN, who aim to change laws in order to benefit all animals in Spain; and SAS who recognise that Trap-Neuter-Return is an essential practice to humanely resolve the street cat problem.


Amalia Melendreras Montesinos from the Veterinary College stressed the need to get accurate veterinary reports to ensure prosecution in animal abuse cases. Amalia is responsible for the SIAMU Microchip Database in Murcia ( which links to the Europetnet Microchip Database operated by Dr Michel Schoffeniels, a qualified vet working in Belgium and the founder of Europetnet Microchip Database. Michel explained to the group how the whole system works; see more on the PAES website:

Mandy Marshall from SAS (San Animal Santuario in Aguilas) spoke about the group’s experience of Trap-Neuter-Return to keep down cat colonies and poignantly, Jill Sylvester spoke about keeping yourself safe when you are working in animal welfare. It’s easy to get involved and put yourself in danger, physical and emotional. Jill explained how to avoid this.

Raquel López Teruel of DeAnimals, is one of only three specialists lawyers in Spain specialising in animal welfare. Raquel explained the complications of the law process in cases of animal abuse and stressed how essential it is to do things right to ensure a prosecution. She has great success with some horrendous cases and wants to encourage more lawyers to specialise and make a difference.

Vivienne Wharton, President of ACTIN and joint promoter of the National Animal Welfare Conference, expresses her thanks to Raquel for what she has done on some difficult cases this past 12 months. “Without Raquel, her professionalism and her extremely hard work, we would never have got as far we have. She helped us secure rescues we would not have accomplished alone; I cannot thank her enough”.
Dr Nuria Querol spoke about Animal Abuse & Interpersonal Violence and fascinated the audience as did Dr Dagmar Mayer of Worldwide Veterinary Service. Did you know that, worldwide, at least 61,000 people die of rabies each year, 24,000 of these in India alone. Mission Rabies, a WVS project, managed to vaccinate over 150,000 dogs in India since they started in 2013. Remember, cats can get rabies too so all the more reason to Trap-Neuter-Return the Spanish street cats.
Antoinette van Toorenenbergen talked about her work in educating children in schools about animal welfare. She also spoke of the importance of doing TRACES correctly when transporting adopted rescues to homes abroad.

Another of our overseas speakers, Gerard Baert from Animal Fellows, Holland, explained their work with Zooplus there; they donate their products to animal charities. Gerard is looking at the possibility of setting up a similar operation in Spain which would be great.

Barry Caulfield of SCAN (Society for the Care of Animals in Need) in El Verger, Valencia, came a long way to talk with us. He spoke about the realities of running an animal rescue centre.

Juan Antonio Ferrer Garcia
from the Policia Local in Alcantarilla spoke about the role of the Policia Local in animal welfare.

On the practical side of running an Association or Charity, Linda Richardson spoke about the essentials of communicating your cause through News and Social Media as you compete with some 200,000 charity associations in Spain. Sue Thomason, Vice President Cruz Azul, outlined simple ways to grow your charity and stressed the importance of valuing your volunteers, keeping them committed to the cause. Both agreed “Our Volunteers must always come first” – first with support, first with information and first with news.


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The PAES National Animal Welfare Conference is being held at the Costa Narejos Hotel, Los Alcázares, Murcia 16-18 October 2015 and is believed to be the first of its kind in Spain. Three animal welfare organisations from Murcia and Almeria: ACTIN, San Animal and Cruz Azul, are collaborating on the PAES (Protección Animales España) Project which is creating great initiatives and programmes, including the National Animal Welfare Conference.

The conference is aimed at those who would like to learn more about running their own Trap, Neuter and Return campaigns; volunteers involved in shelters, sanctuaries, rescue groups and foster pet parents, as well as anyone who loves animals and wants to get involved.

Delegates will be able to learn about the lifesaving changes taking place across the country and the organisers are confident that they will take those ideas back to pets in shelters, and with rescue groups, in their home towns.

“Our mission is to bring together as many people as we can who are involved in animal welfare in Spain, to encourage co-operation and exchange of ideas” said Lyn Baines, Conference Manager. “We will be launching the PAES Project at the conference and we have some exceptional speakers on various topics.”

The best-of-the-best experts converge at the PAES National Animal Welfare Conference to share their ideas and expertise: leaders of the no-kill movement, experts in animal care and behaviour, marketing and fundraising experts, professionals from private and public animal welfare organisations, and more.

Topics will include:

Animal Welfare Law
European Microchip Database
Compassion Fatigue & Compassion for Rescuers
Knowing Your Boundaries & Keeping Safe
Education in Schools and/or Canine Assisted Therapy
Animal Behaviour
Galgos & Podencos in Spain
Animal Fellows & Zooplus
World Veterinary Service & Trap, Neuter, Return
TNR of Cats – The Spanish Experience
Creating & Managing Cat Colonies
Communicating Your Cause/Marketing & PR Tips

“We have speakers from all over Europe who will share their expertise and experiences with our delegates” commented Lyn. “We know how hard it is running an animal welfare charity, so we have kept the registration donations as low as possible, so that we can engage as many people as possible.”

You can find out more about the conference itinerary and how to register by visiting their website: PAES CONFERENCE or by email:Conference Email

Or click on the logo below:

PAES (Protección Animales España) is a project that has been developed by the ACTIN Association (Charity Number G30866925) with the aim of bringing together associations, protectoras, animalistas, government, authorities and professionals or companies interested in animal welfare so that, by working together, we can make a real difference in improving the welfare and treatment of animals in Spain.

Our aim is to provide a Legal Group, Veterinarian Group and, eventually, our own Rescue Centre, to co-ordinate fostering with the various local rescue charities. This will enable us to monitor dogs and pass them as fit, before they are released to foster homes and, eventually, their forever homes.