Jetpets Companion Animal Rescue Awards resounding success in 2019

The Companion Animal Rescue Awards was created and launched by Cathy Beer of Pets4Life in 2018 to celebrate and recognise achievements in rescue, rehabilitation and rehoming of companion animals in Australia-wide.  It is a national program that showcases excellence and innovation in rescue.

2019 Jetpets Rescue Awards Ceremony held during the 8th National G2Z Summit & Workshops. Jo Lyons Photography

Photo: Jo Lyons Photography

In 2019, our goal was to build on the success of last year and shine the light on more rescue organisations who are working with their communities to improve the welfare of companion animals.  A huge thank you to Jetpets who have continued their support as our Platinum Rescue Hero and Naming Partner, hence the program is called the Jetpets Companion Animal Rescue Awards 2019.  Thank you to renowned Animal Behaviourist, Dr Joanne Righetti, Pet Problems Solved, who returned to the Rescue Awards as our Ambassador. This year, we introduced a new category, ‘Outstanding New Rescue Group’ for rescue groups operating 12 – 36 months and we opened up category, ‘Innovation in Rescue’ to anyone who is doing things differently to improve companion animal welfare. We introduced three new Judges, Bondi Vet, Dr Alex Hynes, Anne Boxhall who brings 28 years’ experience in sheltering and rescue; and Bayer Animal Health Veterinarian, Dr Liisa Ahlström.  

The Jetpets Companion Animal Rescue Awards 2019 launched on 10th April at the Cat Protection Society NSW, (our 2018 winner of the Community Education & Outreach Program award). Open for entries was from 1st May to 7th July 2019. The Finalists were announced on 13th August 2019 by media release.  The Winners were revealed at an exciting Rescue Awards Ceremony on 12th September sponsored by Nature’s Gift during the 8th National G2Z Summit & Workshops held at the Gold Coast. Jo Lyons Photography and Refuel Creative captured the joyful event. Thanks to our wonderful 2019 Supporters, the winners received fabulous prizes.  Every entrant for the industry categories received a free Connecting Up webinar.

We are thrilled with the overwhelmingly positive response from the rescue industry in 2019!  Entrants have said that the entry process helps them to take the time to reflect and audit their rescue organisation. The Finalists and Winners have said the recognition by the Jetpets Companion Animal Rescue Awards not only helps to attract funding and increase awareness of their work in the community, but also boosts morale among staff and volunteers to carry on particularly during challenging times.


  • Launch of the 2019 Jetpets Companion Animal Rescue Awards at the Cat Protection Society NSW on 10th April 2020
  • Over 1,000 entries received across 8 categories
  • 957 entries for the Advocate®People’s Rescue Story category
  • Over 70 pieces of coverage reaching over 2.8M people Australia-wide
  • Media coverage included – Weekend Sunrise, Studio 10, That’s Life magazine, ABC radio Afternoons, ABC Hobart radio, National Geographic Kids, RSPCA The Biscuit, Vet Practice Magazine, Australian Dog Lover
  • Winners were revealed among 250 of their peers at the 8th National G2Z Summit & Workshops
  • Facebook Live Streaming of the Rescue Awards Ceremony on 12th September by Refuel Creative had 2.4K views and a reach of 3,624 passionate pet adopters and volunteers in the rescue community Australia-wide

Our amazing judges

2019 Judges: Nell Thompson, Dr Anne Fawcett, Dr Michael O'Donoghue, Vickie Davy, Bondi Vet Dr Alex Hynes, Cathy Beer patting Yoshi. Jo Lyons Photography

Photo: Lyons Photography

Thank you to our Judges who donated their time and expertise to the 2019 Jetpets Companion Animal Rescue Awards.  It’s greatly appreciated! More about the judges on the Rescue Awards website.

Categories 1 – 7 Judges:

  • Nell Thompson, Co-ordinator of Getting To Zero (G2Z) and Secretary to the Committee for the Australian Institute of Animal Management
  • Vickie Davy, Co-Founder and Joint CEO of PetRescue
  • Tim Vasudeva, Director of Corporate Affairs at Animals Australia
  • Anne Boxhall, former Chief Executive for SAFE Inc, 28 years’ experience in sheltering and rescue
  • Dr Alex Hynes, Emergency Veterinarian and Co-star of new Bondi Vet TV series (and her adopted dog, Yoshi)
  • Dr Anne Fawcett, Animal Welfare Veterinarian
  • Sandy Matheson, Jetpets Founder and Managing Director
  • Dr Michael O’Donoghue, Co-Founder of People and Pets, small animal Veterinarian
  • Dr Anthony Bennett, Veterinarian and Co-Star of Village Vets

Category 8 (Advocate® People’s Rescue Story) Judges:

  • Dr Liisa Ahlström, Bayer Animal Health Veterinarian
  • Dan White, Senior Brand Manager at Bayer Animal Health
  • Cathy Beer, Founder of Pets4Life and the Companion Animal Rescue Awards

Over 1,000 entries

Jetpets Rescue Awards Ceremony 2019 Winners: Sue Quartermain of RSPCA Victoria, Marisa Debattista of Second Chance Animal Rescue, Nicole Tharle of Dandy Cat Rescue, Brooke Rankmore of AMRRIC, Joanne Amos of Maneki Neko Cat Rescue, Michelle Gallo of Camden Council and Jeremy Bennett of Sutherland Shire Animal Shelter. Jo Lyons Photography

Photo: Jo Lyons Photography

Over 1,000 entries were received in 2019 across 8 categories compared with 517 entries for 7 categories in 2018.  957 entries were received for the Advocate® People’s Rescue Story and 50 completed and eligible submissions received from the industry.  Categories listed below. Categories 1-7 were for the rescue industry.

  1. Outstanding Rescue Group (for groups operating over 36 months)
  2. Outstanding New Rescue Group (for groups operating 12 – 36 months). New in 2019
  3. Outstanding Animal Shelter
  4. Outstanding Council Animal Shelter
  5. Innovation in Rescue
  6. Community Education and Outreach Program
  7. Volunteer of the Year
  8. Advocate®People’s Rescue Story (for pet adopters and foster carers)

Our wonderful supporters

Thank you to our 2019 Supporters, we could not have produced such a successful Rescue Awards without you!

Our Platinum Rescue Hero and Naming Partner

Our Gold Rescue Partners
Pet Insurance Australia
Refuel Creative

Our Rescue Awards Ceremony Supporter
Nature’s Gift

Our Silver Rescue Supporters
Pet Problems Solved
Pound Paws
Connecting Up
World Animal Protection

Our official photographer
Jo Lyons Photography

Our Rescue & Prize Advocates
We Are Pets
Aussie Dog
Loyalty Pet Treats
Your Vet Online




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