AWOL’s story began in 2004 when Pauline and Graham moved from England to Luxor. Shocked by the lack of veterinary treatment and the poor state of the animals on the west bank they set about trying to help the animals wherever possible.
By 2007 they were working as an unofficial voluntary organisation caring for these poor animals. In 2008 AWOL was registered as a charity in England with Jan Bennell and Dawn Wallace running the UK side of the charity.
AWOL vet Dr Mohamed and Pauline travelled almost daily around the villages in the dirt, dust and searing heat treating sick and injured animals wherever they were needed. For the first 5 years of its existence AWOL worked out of a car touring the rural villages around El Marise to treat animals in need. Pauline and Dr Mohamed became a regular sight in the little black car full of medical supplies.
AWOL has made a real difference to the welfare of the animals in the villages that form the farming community of El Marise. As AWOL grew we were able to expand to cover the neighbouring village of Armant. After years of working out of the ‘little black car’ that became so well known AWOL realised its dream of opening a dedicated medical care centre on the west bank; the only such treatment centre on this side of the Nile in Luxor. The centre opened its doors for the locals and their animals in January 2013. The centre is small but adequate and provides a permanent base from which to work. Word gets around quickly in the rural communities and AWOL now treats animals from much further afield as the locals know exactly where to find an excellent and free vet when they need one.