Helping Hands in Snake Safety (HHiSS) is a Non-Governmental Organisation, founded in 2022. HHiSS operates in the fields of snake conservation and effective snakebite management in Zambia. Our main goals, therefore, are to reduce snakebite incidences and improve clinical treatment of snakebite, as well as conserving snakes as an integral part of Zambia’s ecosystems. We achieve our goals by conducting talks about snakes and snake safety in communities and schools and by giving training courses.
HHiSS is governed by the board, consisting of five members. The day-to-day operations are conducted by the National Coordinator and through the ad hoc engagement of consultants and volunteers.
Snakes form an important, integral part of Zambia’s ecosystems. They are middle-level predators that eat prey and are eaten by other, larger animals. Snakes are the most effective protectors of our crops against rodents and their venom is being used to develop medication for humans. To conserve snakes, we work with various organisations in the conservation sector both within and outside Zambia. Together we raise awareness on the importance of snakes as well as the fact that most snakes pose no threat to humans.
“In the 21st century, snakebite is the most neglected of all the neglected tropical diseases” – Dr David Warrell, University of Oxford.
There are many misconceptions regarding first aid in snakebite which need to be addressed and there is need to improve the clinical management of snakebite in Zambia. Alongside the Zambian Ministry of Health and other actors in the health sector we aim to improve the effective management of snakebites. We achieve this by jointly developing snakebite guidelines, by developing an up-to-date snakebite treatment curriculum and by training health professionals. Further, HHiSS provides free advice in snakebite cases (see button ‘snakebite emergency’). Finally, HHiSS has published a book on safe first aid measures in case of a snakebite.
*ALL PROCEEDS GO TOWARDS SNAKE BITE TREATMENT*