A lifetime of service
MAREE Hill made a final promise to her father before his death that she would look after the Harvey Bay Animal Refuge’s animals and volunteers.
Mrs Hill’s parents were the first caretakers of the refugee which was born out of a conversation at a local pub in 1975.
The refuge didn’t open it’s doors until 1977 but Mrs Hill and her family have been there from the start.
“I started when I was 22 and I think the passion will stay with me until my last breath,” Mrs Hill said.
The refuge takes in cats and dogs of all shapes and sizes and finds them new homes with loving, forever families.
Mrs Hill says the refuge ran solely with the help of donations and volunteers.
“Without the volunteers it just wouldn’t exist,” she said.
“They are the heart beat of the refuge each playing a different role.”
The centre has people work at trades, administration, exercising the animals and hydro-bathing them.
Mrs Hill said there were many rewarding aspects of volunteering with the animals.
“Hearing the success stories when people send you photos or bring the pets back to visit after they have found new homes is amazing,” she said.
“We also take the animals to visit the nursing homes.”
The refuge is located just off the Maryborough-Hervey Bay Rd at Nikenbah.
It is open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 10am to 4pm.
To find out more about how to become a volunteer, call 4128 2722.
DEDICATED: Hervey Bay Animal Refuge volunteers Bob Heathcote (left) with Callaghan, Cary Lewis with Boots, Alexandra Good with Bacardi, Sally Walker with Simba, Karen Lewis with Charlotte and Glenda Hare with Cooper.