Culture of Care Prize awarded7 months ago
We awarded our second Culture of Care Prize during International Laboratory Animal Technician Week (30 January – 3 February). Pascalle van Loo presented this year’s trophy to the lucky winner, animal technician Anja van der Sar.
The jury praised Anja as a key figure with GDL Klein who has been there for everyone for years now, and as a superb example of someone who works with the researchers and for the animals. As the jury put it, ‘Besides relying on their own experience, researchers and animal technicians have someone who really sees the animals every day, who they can trust 100%’.
The colleagues of Anja’s who nominated her were unanimous in their praise for her. A few quotes:
‘You’re super approachable, and that ensures an open atmosphere since no question is too crazy. You can always provide advice and you’re always ready and willing to help, even if someone is new and needs training. You take plenty of time for things like talking about the condition of an animal in an experiment or doing a procedure with a little extra care, or discussing the next steps to take.’
‘You look with a critical eye both at interventions, including surgery, and changes to the work protocol, and you always want to help us find better ways to do things. You feel free to say you don’t agree with something, and to make modifications. If there’s a better way to do it, then you discuss it. You’re very open to alternative techniques and you’re creative in how you think about them. One example is to wrap the animal up in a flannel or a pad instead of the “classical” way to restrain it.’
‘You are literally there for everyone, always. It doesn’t matter what time of the day a researcher or technician phones or emails, even on the weekend, they always get help from you. If the animals need help, you get there earlier and stay later. Besides relying on their own experience, researchers and animal technicians have someone who really sees the animals every day, who they can trust 100%.’