Sue given a SAFE place to sleep

Alexander ScottPilbara News
SAFE Founder Sue Hedley
Camera IconSAFE Founder Sue Hedley

The Karratha community and local businesses gave its biggest animal lover, Sue Hedley, a gift she will never forget — a new bedroom.

Medal of the Order of Australia recipient Ms Hedley, pictured, founded the animal rescue service SAFE in Karratha in 2003, a volunteer-led organisation that uses an innovative foster care model to ensure animals are rehomed.

The SAFE headquarters are located at her house, with Ms Hedley sleeping in the lounge to make room for cats and dogs to be housed.

Volunteers and local businesses decided it was time to thank her for all her work by providing her with a room of her own to relax in.

Businesses around Karratha donated a bed, a mattress, painting supplies and a new TV.

SAFE volunteer John Sharp said it took about a month to renovate the bedroom.

“It’s our thank you to Sue for everything she does,” he said.

Mr Sharp said it was fantastic to have the community support the renovation. “Everyone we asked gave us everything we asked for, the community spirit in Karratha is awesome,” he said.

“We hope she likes it, makes the most of it, and doesn’t turn it back into a cat room.”

Ms Hedley said it was overwhelming to receive the community gift.

“It really shows the appreciation the community has for what SAFE does, and I’m so grateful that everyone was so quick to help,” she said.

“I know the community values SAFE, but this extra personal side of things, to contribute in this way to help with my life, means a lot.”

Ms Hedley said it was close to 18 years since she had started SAFE.

“The need is massive, so to be acknowledged by the community, and for them to want me to continue to support the community, it means so much,” she said.

“It’s going to help me continue to provide the service, and as I age, sustainability is so important, to know I have the Karratha community behind myself, and SAFE gives us confidence for our future.”

Last year Ms Hedley’s work was also recognised with a Medal of the Order of Australia.

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