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The Animal Rights and Rescue Group is a registered charity that was formed in 1995, following the closing of the RSPCA branch in the region.

The group was started by Barbara Steffenson and a small group of dedicated people who worked tirelessly to help the unwanted, injured and neglected animals. The group continues to work seven days a week and is always urgently in need of committed volunteers and foster carers.

Through generous donations to Animal Rights & Rescue Group, and a huge amount of work by our members to raise funds, with garage sales, 2nd hand clothing and goods, markets and stalls we try to cover the costs involved in helping these animals.


The animals are mainly cared for in Foster Carer homes, with a few living at our Centre in Lismore. We are desperately trying to raise funds to build much-needed emergency accommodation.

Our network of wonderful Veterinary Surgeons assist in low cost desexing, which is paramount to reduce the large numbers of unwanted pets currently being euthanised daily in pounds across Australia.

Where breaches of the Cruelty to Animals Act occurs ARRG refers to the local RSPCA Inspector or the police and supports and assists where possible.


We are a NO KILL group, which does restrict the number of animals we can accept into care due to the number of carers at any given time.

Our Emergency Care Shelter will be important in the growing number of animals that find themselves homeless with their owners, are victim of domestic violence or those needing care for an animal due to emergency health problems of their owners.

ARRG recognises the need to educate our young people about the responsibilities of owning and caring of a family pet. We have participated in education programmes for schools to assist our young and hopefully give a brighter future for our pets.

We would like to establish a low-cost desexing programme to assist in the prevention of unwanted litters of puppies and kittens. We see a mobile desexing clinic as a necessity to assist rural people in desexing their animals.

We will continue to represent the pet as a valuable part of our community and family, and will fight to ensure they are not treated as a disposable item.


Check it out, it is an exemplar of compassion on steroids! Anyone wishing to donate – or make a bequest to – a trustworthy animal protection group in Australia should look no further than ARRG.” Philip Wollen – Kindness Trust Melbourne

Animal Rights and Rescue (ARRG) is a non-kill, foster-care group, we rescue and care for animals until they find their forever home. Our ‘foster carers’ and volunteers are all unpaid, monies donated to us, is used directly to help the animals.

As a self-funded volunteer group without government support. We rely solely on your help and our fund-raising initiatives to keep saving lives.

We also support people in times of hardship such as domestic abuse, serious illness or homelessness by providing temporary shelter for their pets while they recover. ARRG assists local pounds when required and other agencies such as hospitals, refuges, and vets for re-homing of pets in times of crisis.

Since 1995 Animal Rights & Rescue have rescued and re-homed over 15,000 unwanted animals and have responded to neglect/cruelty cases when the RSCPA is not available and the police need help.

We provide real animal welfare programmes and help with assistance to those in financial crisis or those that are homeless. We provide affordable desexing assistance for people in genuine need, this program has prevented many thousands of unwanted kitten and puppy litters from later ending up dumped or in shelters or pounds.

Our Number 1 priority has been to build a No-Kill shelter, on the Far North Coast.

ARRG has been really busy over the last few years establishing our centre and working hard to provide accommodation for pets in desparate situations.

Thanks to our wonderful voluteers, we have gardens and walkways with a couple of temporary runs for dogs and a small indoor one for cats. Carers continue to provide the bulk of care and we always need more carers.


Increasingly, in fact almost weekly, ARRG is called upon by welfare agencies to provide, or find, temporary accommodation for pets whose owners are in desperate situations.

These situations include:

Domestic violence
Unexpected hospitalisation
Individuals who find themselves in such situations are generally unable to pay for their animals to go to even the least expensive boarding kennels. Hence the provision of free boarding at ARRG will allow desperate pet owners to take the next step to alleviate their current difficult circumstances without the constant worry about the fate of their pets.


We have Council approved plans for a kennel facility housing 10 dogs in separate runs and at this point there is a large cement slab on the ground, but negligible funds to complete the kennel building.

We desperately require $100,000 to finish the kennel project and provide temporary boarding facilities for pet owners in times of extreme hardship.



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