7 June 2023

RSPCA WA’s Animal Welfare Awards 2023 are now open–and the charity wants to hear about heroic and caring humans, as well as incredible furry friends.

Anyone can submit an online nomination for a deserving group or individual working to save animal lives or improve animal welfare. Plus, there is one special category exclusively for animals who are making a positive difference for their owners or their community.

RSPCA WA Chair Lynne Bradshaw AM said the awards were a chance to spotlight and celebrate quiet achievers across WA.

‘If you know an amazing animal welfare group, a devoted volunteer, or a brave animal rescuer, we want to hear their story,’ she said.

‘These people and groups don’t do it for recognition, but it’s so important we pause and acknowledge their efforts–I guarantee the animals would if they could.

‘Highlighting this work also has the potential to inspire others to treat animals with kindness.’

Mrs Bradshaw said, of the six categories, the Animal Award had proved especially popular last year, and had unearthed many heart-warming tales.

‘We saw powerful examples of the human-animal bond last year, from pets who had turned their owners’ lives around, to therapy animals positively impacting their communities,’ she said.Animal Award winner Legacy the donkey.

One of the more unusual Animal Award recipients in 2022 was Legacy the therapy donkey. The amazing equine has spent the past five years helping clients who are struggling with addiction, mental health issues, isolation or physical disability.

Women’s Health and Family Services counsellor Mary-Anne Wallace said Legacy listened without judgement, which could be incredibly powerful for women who had experienced trauma.

‘Legacy’s temperament is that of a wise old soul. He gets up close to participants and just holds the space with them. Clients tell us he is amazing at helping them feel more relaxed,’ she said.

Nominating an amazing animal like Legacy, or a heroic human, is quick and easy.

Just visit www.rspcawa.org.au/awards

You’ll also find more information about the six award categories, which are: Animal Award; Humane Award; Youth Award; Community Action Award; Volunteer Award; and Corporate Champion Award. Recipients will be recognised at a special ceremony on Wednesday 4 October for World Animal Day.