Since 2010 Catherine and David have been running NSW Hen Rescue, giving farmed hens a second chance. It is more accurate to say a first chance because for many of the hens that NSW Hen Rescue take in, it is their first chance to see sunshine, dust bathe, flap, preen, walk and even turn around. It is the first chance they have had to feel love, respect and safety. This opportunity has been provided to hundreds of hens thanks to the tireless work and dedication of Catherine and David and the supporters of Hen Rescue. In early 2020 they took in a burn victim called Amelia, who survived the bushfires that killed billions of animals. Hen Rescue was one of a small number of charities that saved the lives of farmed animals during the crisis. With the help of Hen Rescue, Amelia received urgent veterinary treatment that saved her life and she was one of the few hen victims of the bushfires to survive.
The pressure on charities that receive no government assistance for the work they do has a mental toll and a financial ceiling. NSW Hen Rescue has been operating from rented homes and has had to move seven times in the past 10 years. It recently had the stress of receiving a notice of eviction and is currently fundraising to set up a permanent rescue centre. Catherine and David do not want to shut down the rescue centre, but without a permanent location their vital work is simply not sustainable. A price cannot be put on the work done and the lives saved by this charity. As Catherine says, "Saving one animal won't change the world, but it will change the world for that one animal." I am pleased to report that Hen Rescue has found a residence, but the Government must do more to support the essential work carried out by similar rescue groups. On behalf of the many hens that have been saved, I thank Catherine and David for their life's work in providing these animals with a vestige of the life that was stolen from them.