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28 JUL 2023

Return and Earn helps build SAFE homes for cats and dogs

Sydney Animals for Everyone Rehoming (SAFE Animal Rehoming) is a small, volunteer-run animal charity with a cat rehoming and boarding centre based in Roseville. And thanks to Return and Earn, they’ve already earned $7,500.

The charity was featured for six months on 11 Return and Earn machines across Sydney’s northwest, from Dee Why to Berowra, Balgowlah to Ryde. Anyone using these machines to recycle their eligible drink containers can donate their 10c refund to re-home cats and dogs in need. Individuals can also download the Return and Earn app to donate if they have a different local machine.

The local community have been quick to support the recycling initiative. One supporter downloaded the Return and Earn app specifically to be able to help SAFE and another individual with no previous connection to the charity has donated more than 100 containers to help animals in need.

Return and Earn has also given long-term SAFE supporter Barbara Webster the chance to maintain her involvement through difficult times.

“Barb has been there for SAFE from the start but unfortunately, she now uses a wheelchair. Nevertheless, she continues to be one of SAFE’s most loyal supporters by donating her recyclable chocolate milk containers. Her carers collect them in her home, and a SAFE volunteer picks them up every week,” said SAFE co-founder and volunteer Sue Barber.

“It’s wonderful that the Return and Earn scheme means that Barb can still contribute to SAFE, and thankfully she can still occasionally come to SAFE Haven to cuddle a kitten or two,” she said.

Sue hopes that the partnership with Return and Earn will become a regular, ongoing source of fundraising. The money raised will help to cover the expenses involved in rescuing and caring for cats and dogs both at SAFE Haven and in foster care. The funds help with food, litter, vet care, desexing and microchipping, as well as rent and utilities for the premises. SAFE also hopes to expand its operation and has plans to build new cat enclosures.

“The Return and Earn initiative means everyone can help. It’s a win-win—the charities benefit, the environment benefits, and it makes people feel good that they are doing their bit, however small,” said Sue.

To learn more about fundraising through Return and Earn visit


Return and Earn is a partnership between the NSW Government, scheme coordinator Exchange for Change and network operator TOMRA Cleanaway.