Home' The Canberra Times : CHRONICLE 8.1.13 Contents THE CHRONICLE, Tuesday, January 8 2013 - 18
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RSPCA officer Sophie Finney with Holly. The society's statistics show a reduced intake of animals and a good
Picture: Daniel Spellman
THE RSPCA believes its messages are
starting to hit home, with the facility
recording a lower intake of animals for
the second year in a row.
The animal welfare body's 2012
statistics also demonstrated a positive
rehoming rate -- 93 per cent for dogs
and 90 per cent for cats.
Chief executive officer Michael
Linke says the RSPCA's ultimate goal
was to eliminate the need for its
"I suppose at the end of the day, the
RSPCA wants to put itself out of
business," Mr Linke said.
"If we do that one day in the distant
future then we've achieved the ulti-
mate goal of what we stand for --
preventing cruelty and suffering of
"To see a reduction [of animals]
now two years in a row is very
pleasing and it means that some of our
messages about de-sexing, abandon-
ment, caring for native animals and
living in harmony with native wildlife
are really starting to cut through to
Statistics showed the organisation
dealt with 110 different species over
the past 12 months, including an
albino echidna and a goat.
"It's more than cats and dogs ... if
you can think of an animal, it's
probably come into the RSPCA for
care," Mr Linke said.
"We had a goat that we rehomed this
year and it's fantastic that a goat would
be surrendered and we'd be able to
find it a home.
"We also had 11 fish throughout the
year that needed rehoming -- so finding
someone with those skills and the
facilities ... was special for us."
While RSPCA ACT also saw an
8 per cent reduction in native animals
during 2012, more than 50 per cent of
those had been inadvertently interfered
with by humans. Car strikes and pet
attacks were the two biggest reasons
animals were brought into the
Mr Linke said there were a number
of things the public could do to ensure
the safety of animals.
"Think about what we're doing and
what we're leaving behind that can
damage animals," he said.
"We see so many swans come in
with fishing twine around their necks,
so if you're fishing, take responsibility
and clean up after yourself.
"Don't feed birds bread and leftover
snacks ... because it's not a natural
"There's so many things we can do
as a society just to lessen our impact so
that animals don't end up at RSPCA.
We're seeing it which is fantastic, but
it would be great to see a third year in
a row where that reduction comes
Spirit of giving comes full
circle with Rotary program
WHILE Christmas Day has passed by
for another year, the spirit of the season
continues for a southside community
The Rotary Club of Weston Creek is
preparing for another year of helping the
community by holding working bees at
an independent aged care facility in
The club also celebrated the Christmas
season by presenting gift cards in the
lead up to the festive day.
The Weston Creek club has been
providing assistance to the residents
since 1998 in the form of gardening and
general maintenance of their yards.
This typically includes mowing, prun-
ing, raking and removing waste to ensure
gardens are neat, tidy and hazard-free.
Some working bees have also
included taking away unwanted house-
hold junk, filling skips donated by local
businesses and spreading mulch.
Weston Creek Rotary Club Ambara
Court co-ordinator Ash Pagett said the
group decided to begin helping after they
had constructed a pergola for the area
about seven years ago.
"This ticks all the boxes for Rotary in
that it is much needed, really appreciated
and supports the local community," Mr
Ambara Court residents Carmel O'K-
eefe and Bea Bunyan co-ordinate the
working bees on behalf of the residents.
Each working bee they are given a "to
do" list itemising the maintenance jobs
required by those lacking the mobility to
complete the work themselves.
Mr Pagett said the final working bee
for 2012 was an opportunity to present
the residents with Woolworths gift cards
to spend as a Christmas gift.
The residents themselves even donat-
ed two hampers of non-perishable good-
ies for the club to auction during an
upcoming Rotary event.
Mr Pagett said the money raised
would go back into the club's com-
"We re-invest it into our services one
way or another," he said. "We try to use
our money as much as we can locally."
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