top of page



A little about how animal rescue started for me...I come from a family that had a real love for animals and naturally had them in my life growing up.

In 1999 I got involved with the Warkworth SPCA Supporters Group and started fostering for them. I realised at this point I had found my passion and it grew from there.

With my husband's support and know-how we built a facility on our property to provide temporary homing for these strays until they were adopted to forever loving homes. The Warkworth SPCA Supporters Group played a big part in the expansion and were huge supporters for years.

We are now an independent shelter with a wonderful team of volunteers. Please note, the refuge is not a registered charity. 



I became involved with Julie's Animal Refuge because I wanted to help Julie with her mission to help animals in need. I lend a hand wherever I can, admin, fostering, sorting goods donated for the shop, vet drop-offs and pickups…whatever is needed.

I adopted my first foster Charlie, then a little brother for him called Ziggy, then a stray cat trapped on a farm. Our clothes and furniture are always covered in cat fur, and the cats often rule the bed - but it's so worth it !



I have had the honour and privilege of volunteering at Julie's Animal Refuge for over 5 years, as support administration.



After I had a minor stroke my brother advised that I do something I love.  As I love animals, I asked Julie if I could volunteer some time to spend with the cats at the Refuge. My main passion is to give the cats company, keep them happy, play or sleep with them (if it's siesta time!) and to socialise with them all and help the shyer ones become less shy and enjoy their lives until they find their forever homes.  In short, I feel that the love we give comes back even more, so my mantra is just to be kind, and give them all love (and play!), which is what we all need, animals and people.  The rewards are magic on seeing a cat or kitten going to a fantastic home just for them.



Every Wednesday morning Gayleen gives her time to our  weekly garage sale.

This enables the shelter to keep running. Gayleen is really good at what she does and is a real asset to us.



I love volunteering at the Refuge.

I help out with pretty much anything that needs doing.

Its great seeing the cats and kittens getting the help they need, and going to their furever homes.

Kerry Sherriff.jpg


Cats have been part of my life since I was a child so after I moved to Snells Beach (with my daughter and two cats in tow) I was fortunate to become a volunteer at Julie's Animal Refuge, which I'm extremely grateful for.


I help keep the refuge spick & span for our furry residents, play, cuddle, talk and sometimes sing (badly) to them when no one is around. I also really enjoy meeting other cat lovers, there is nothing more rewarding than when a cat & human find each other.



Foster homes are an essential and valued part of our operations at

the Refuge. 

They help in so many ways, providing extra space when we are full, bottle feeding abandoned kittens, socialising the "scaredy cats", and just providing love and care when it is most needed.

We couldn't do it without you !



We would like to thank all our volunteers and fosters, past and present, for everything you have contributed to the refuge.


Julie was awarded the Companion Animals Assisi Award in 2008 for her dedication to rescuing and attending to stray cats.  In 2019, Julie was also awarded The Kiwibank New Zealand Local Hero of the Year Award for her efforts.

bottom of page