“Rescuing Cats from the Perils of the Streets” was the original aim of the Cat Welfare Society when it was established in 1961. Thanks to the efforts of dedicated staff and volunteers over many years we have grown to become Western Australia’s premier cat welfare organisation, trading under the name of Cat Haven.
Our vision is that every WA cat should be a well cared for cat and we work towards achieving this by:
Cat Haven is an ‘open admission’ shelter which means we never turn away any cat no matter how old, sick or feral. As a charity, with very little government funding, we rely heavily on donations from the public and businesses to keep cats fed, safe and healthy until they find a home.
Between 6500 and 8500 cats are surrendered to Cat Haven every year and we strive to find loving homes for as many of these cats as possible. Cats and kittens may be surrendered by owners who are no longer able to care for them or by people who find stray, abandoned or feral cats. We also act as a ‘pound’ facility for many Local Government Authorities.
Cat Haven is part of the national ‘Getting to Zero’ program that aims to minimise euthanasia of healthy, treatable and re-homable animals. Our euthanasia rate has dropped dramatically from around 75% a decade ago to just 9% in 2017 and is still dropping! This has been achieved by operating programs such as our Foster Care Program, Ringworm Cats Program, Animal Support Program, Barn Buddies Program and Companion Cats Program that are saving thousands of cats’ lives.
Cat Haven also provides information and education about responsible cat ownership and the importance of sterilising and microchipping cats to assist with the broader issue of stray, feral and unwanted cats in WA.
We work proactively with key stakeholders and collaborate with other animal welfare groups and Local Government Authorities to advance the welfare of cats in Western Australia.
Cat Haven is run by both paid staff and volunteers and we greatly value their contribution, along with the incredible generosity of our patrons, supporters, donors, foster carers, corporate sponsors and the media. See our kind sponsors here.
Cat Haven’s core values underpin our actions and guide our behaviour as individuals and as an organisation. They are fundamental to the way we work to achieve our mission and aspirations.
We behave ethically and honestly. We are professional, trustworthy and dedicated to our work.
We embrace diversity and listen to different points of view. We consider the feelings, wishes and rights of others.
We are approachable, helpful, considerate and compassionate. We care about the welfare of people and animals.
We are motivated, industrious and committed to achieving optimal outcomes. We value learning and welcome new ideas and ways to improve as individuals and as an organisation.
Collaboration and Teamwork
We fulfil our responsibilities and support others to fulfil theirs. We are reliable, cooperative and generous in sharing our skills and knowledge.
The Cat Welfare Society Inc is an Incorporated Association that is overseen by a Board of Management elected from and by the Society’s members. Currently Board members include professionals from a broad range of industries.
Cat Haven Board Members
Scott Gillespie - Chair
Scott Gillespie joined the board in October 2019. Scott has over 11 years as managing director of Carisbrook Enterprises – a national sales, merchandising, warehouse and logistics company providing services to Australasia’s largest food producers Goodman Fielder and George Weston Foods. Scott completed his Masters in Business Administration in 2016 at the Curtin Graduate School of Business. Scott has been involved in many non-for-profit organisations from making donations to being the chair person of the Variety Ball Committee working alongside 4 others to raise in excess of $250,000 per annum for Variety. Scott successfully formed a partnership with BMW where they donated a vehicle for a raffle raising $112,000 for Variety -the Children’s Charity.
Scott brings extensive knowledge on successful fundraising with a wide network of people that could assist Cat Haven in the future.
Scott has adopted 3 cats from Cat Haven and he and his husband have donated funds in lieu of gifts for birthday functions and their wedding. They have also funded extensions and new equipment for the vet clinic
Candy Choo - Vice Chair
Candy Choo joined the Board in October 2019. Candy has extensive background in corporate governance, risk management, advocacy and membership not for profit organisations over the past 12 years. As the CEO of Local Government Professionals WA and an experienced practitioner in organisation psychology, Candy has a strong track records in leading transformation and innovation in organisations as well as delivering on strategic outcomes.
Besides being passionate in cat welfare, Candy’s experiences with other membership associations also sees her bringing key expertise into Cat Haven to drive membership attraction and retention.
Candy is a registered psychologist with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.”
Jenny Ough - Treasurer
Joining the board in 2011, Jenny brings over 30 years’ experience as a Chartered Accountant, having spent almost a decade at KPMG at the start of her career. Currently the Principal of her own Accounting and Bookkeeping practice, Jenny has experience working with/in a range of organisations and industries, including other not-for-profit organisations, State Government, franchises, and various privately owned businesses (in security, real estate, finance brokers, facilities maintenance, recycling, construction, hardware, retail and other services). Jenny has skills in strategic planning, capital and recurrent budgeting, and all financial management matters. She holds a Bachelor of Business (Accountancy) degree from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology and was admitted to the Institute of Chartered Accountants in 1989 having successfully completed the Institute’s Post Graduate Professional Year programme. When she is not counting beans, Jenny can be found underwater, scuba diving with a camera in her hand. Photo of Jenny
Robin Orton - Secretary
Robin Orton joined the Board in October 2019 and has over 13 years experience as a Civil Engineer. He has a strong technical background along with project management experience, including subcontractor and financial management. Robin also has extensive stakeholder management experience coupled with strong communication skills. He was worked with volunteer organisations and has a keen interest in social media.
Along with husband Scott, Robin has four cats and has a passion for responsible cat ownership.
Brenda joined the Cat Haven Board in 2019. Brenda has over 40 years’ experience in corporate and government organisations as an IT systems project manager, business analyst and a technical writer. Those organisations and industries have covered most major business sectors, including mining, government, wagering, telecoms and technology.
Brenda has also run her own small business for the last 25 years managing short stay accommodation in central Perth.
Brenda has been a volunteer at Cat Haven for the last four years, fostering over 40 cats, working on the grounds, and applying for grants.
Brenda and her partner have adopted two of their Cat Haven foster cats.
Tamara joined the Board of Cat Haven in October 2018. Tamara has a background in administration and accounting, having worked for the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety for over 10 years in various capacities. She and her husband ran their own Mining Consultancy business for over 20 years, where Tamara managed all administrative duties, including the taxation requirements involved in running a small business. She is a Company Director.
After adopting their cat Lucie from Cat Haven, she became increasingly interested in volunteering, particularly in fundraising, and has been active at events such as Wet Nose Day and particularly Felines and Fashion events and pop-up shops.
She is committed to promoting and improving the profile of Cat Haven. Photo of Tamara
Katy has been an active volunteer with Cat Haven since 2005 including being on the then Committee of Management between 2007 through to 2011 during a major transitional phase of the organisation.
Over the past 15 years, Katy has been heavily involved in Cat Haven’s community fundraising events which has contributed not only additional funding but created new external relationships fostering more support for Cat Haven.
Over the years through her contacts, she has also arranged the donation of numerous trades, services and goods for the betterment of Cat Haven. As a passionate advocate in animal welfare Katy has been a member of other animal welfare committees along with visiting animals shelters in Nepal and India and volunteering at a cat shelter in Bali.
In 2016 Katy attended a companion animal shelter expo in the US run by the Humane Society to gain insight and learn new ideas in aspects of shelter management from numerous large organisations.
Katy has extensive experience in facility and project management within the mining sector and is now employed by a publicly listed company managing federal parliamentary offices across WA and SA.