RSPCA Gladstone volunteer co-ordinator Susanne Norwood is hoping today’s cent sale raises much-needed funds for the organisation.
RSPCA Gladstone volunteer co-ordinator Susanne Norwood is hoping today’s cent sale raises much-needed funds for the organisation. Brenda Strong

Sale raises cash for animal group

EVERY cent counts when it comes to rescuing unwanted animals and Friends of RSPCA Gladstone is scraping the bottom of the money box.

A lack of finances has forced the local not-for-profit group to temporarily cease taking in any more animals until it can get back on solid financial ground.

It will be a couple of weeks until Friends of RSPCA Gladstone can rescue any dogs and cats from the Gladstone Pound, a situation that has deeply upset the group’s publicity officer Judy Whicker.

Mrs Whicker said the group had no money at present and was not able to take any more animals until after its cent sale and market stall at the Gladstone Harbour Festival on Good Friday.

A dramatic increase in the number of animals rescued during the past year has stretched the group’s finances.

“Our vet bills alone for last month were over $16,000 and our vet products were over $4000,” Mrs Whicker said.

“We’ve really had a major influx in rescued animals. We rescued Shadow, a German shepherd cross, from the streets and she had 10 puppies (nine survived) which have been in one-off foster care ever since. They have all been waiting to be desexed and that time has come.”

Mrs Whicker said puppies cost $400-$450 to prepare them for adoption, without including food costs, and were sold for $275.

“We’ve also had about 90 cats in our care; a majority being kittens which also needed to be desexed,” she said.

The group largely relies on financial support and donations from the community as the revenue raised from cat and dog adoptions does not even cover veterinary expenses in caring for and preparing the animals for adoption.

The group sells RSPCA merchandise and hosts regular fundraisers such as raffles, cent sales and movie nights.

An important annual fundraiser for the group is the upcoming Million Paws Walk, with all registrations taken locally going directly to the group.

Mrs Whicker said the group would prefer to fundraise to meet the cost shortfalls rather than increase adoption costs and put prospective buyers off.

She said Friends of RSPCA Gladstone was hoping for a good response to its cent sale today, to be staged at the Gladstone Bowls Club, and will offer more than 400 prizes. Doors open at 11am for a 1pm start.

“We try to do about four to five cent sales a year,” Mrs Whicker said.

“We usually raise about $4000 from each, which helps a lot.”

Other ways you can assist the group is by making donations of pet food and supplies such as bowls, collars and cages plus items to sell at their cent sales by placing them in the donation bins at Coles Gladstone and Woolworths Boyne Island and Kin Kora.

Or you could make a financial donation by phoning Judy Whicker on 0417 065 394.



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