For more than 130 years, the Queensland RSPCA has been rescuing abandoned, abused and injured animals.
They couldn’t do their vital and compassionate work without the help of volunteers.
More than 5,000 generous people donate their time and skills each year – which makes a huge difference to the more than 53,000 animals that come into the care of the society.
Volunteering for RSPCA can take many forms – everything from weekly dog walkers, to administration assistants, to animal ambulance drivers.
At RSPCA Queensland’s Wacol headquarters, “Poodle” Sue gives two days of her week grooming dogs (and cats!) that are sheltered there.
With her shocking purple hair and easy smile, Sue brings a happy vibe to her work – which she’s been doing since the early 2000s.
She says her new doggy ‘dos’ are instrumental in securing new homes for the animals.
“I walked around and saw a few scruffy dogs and clipped them and they went immediately…and I thought, ‘Well if I can do that…’ and that was the beginning of the end,” she told us. “And 12 years later, here we are.”
Mattea Farrugia is another volunteer at RSPCA Wacol, but her ‘charges’ are far from the cute and furry kind!
Since she was a little girl, Mattea has been fascinated by reptiles – and jumped at the chance to volunteer as a reptile carer one day a week for the RSPCA. (The rest of the time she’s a midwife – so, clearly, nurturing little ones comes naturally!)
Around 200 domesticated reptiles are re-homed by RSPCA Queensland each year – snakes, lizards and turtles. These are animals that can’t be released into the wild for various reasons.
But you don’t have to travel to Wacol to help the RSPCA – you can lend a hand in your own home.
Rene Saunders and her daughters, Kiki and Melanja, took an RSPCA course in kitten caring and have since fostered five separate litters of fluff-ball cuties.
The kittens need to be bottle-fed around the clock when they first arrive – and then every six hours. When they’re big enough, they’ll return to the RSPCA for vaccinations and adoption.
Rene says fostering the kittens is like giving a little of her heart to the new owners, but it’s a bittersweet separation when the kittens need to leave.
RSPCA Queensland is always looking for new recruits to its vital volunteer army – maybe you can help?
It’s not just unsung heroes who are spreading the RSPCA message: celebrity ambassadors include sports stars like Brisbane Heat captain Chris Lynn.
In fact, Queensland Cricket goes in to bat for loads of worthy causes – including support of Ovarian Cancer Australia.
The annual Teal Heels event raises both funds and awareness of this women’s disease. It’s held at the Queensland Cricketer’s Club during a Brisbane Heat match.
A ticket includes food and drinks; a silent auction; raffles; player appearances; and guest speakers who are battling–or have battled–ovarian cancer.
Maria Hopes, wife of a former Brisbane Heat player, lost her mum to ovarian cancer. She and her husband came up with the idea of the annual fundraiser.
“It’s really wonderful,” she told us. “I think sport and charities have always had an important partnership and what Ovarian Cancer Australia and Brisbane Heat are doing is just another awesome example of that partnership.”