‘A unique opportunity’ RSPCA Cymru searches for new animal rescue officer in North Wales
The RSPCA – the country’s oldest and largest animal welfare charity – is recruiting for a new Animal Rescue Officer (ARO) in North Wales.
AROs – a new rank in the RSPCA’s inspectorate – carry out vital work to make a real difference to the lives of animals.
RSPCA rescuers have a unique place in society as they are the frontline of animal welfare, rescuing all different types of animals – from hedgehogs to huntsman spiders – as well as helping the people who care for those animals.
The role also includes having a part to play alongside the inspectors in investigating allegations of neglect and cruelty which could lead to prosecutions – this part of the job can be difficult and resilience in facing confrontation is needed from the successful candidates.
Animal welfare is devolved in Wales – meaning the successful candidate for North Wales will learn about Wales’ increasingly distinct animal welfare laws, as well as how to rescue and help animals on the frontline.
RSPCA head of the inspectorate Dermot Murphy said: “As someone who started my career in an entry level role, I know what an exciting opportunity this is for the right candidate.”
“This is a difficult job which needs a resilient character but there are also truly magical moments, such as removing animals from a situation where they are suffering and seeing them heal, physically and mentally.”
“Releasing wildlife is always a joy, untangling a fox that gets caught in goal netting is one example. Helping an owner by giving advice or assistance where a person is struggling is also rewarding.”
“Often by helping an individual you can rectify an issue to improve animal welfare. You also have the opportunity to carry out media interviews and to work with other teams in the RSPCA to play your part in helping to raise awareness of wider welfare issues.”
The RSPCA is also looking to fill vacancies based in London, Surrey, Dorset, Wiltshire, West Mercia, Gloucestershire, Warwickshire, Thames Valley, Essex, Suffolk, the West Midlands, Norfolk, Cambridge and Yorkshire – so there is also an opportunity to work elsewhere in the United Kingdom.
The training for animal rescue officers is as unique as the job – you can expect to abseil down a mountain, swim 50m fully clothed and carry out water rescue training to become part of this fantastic team.
Animal rescue officers can be called out to all sorts of locations, so applicants must have no fear of heights or cramped spaces and – of course – no allergies to animals.
It is a physically demanding job, but the RSPCA is hoping to attract applicants from all walks of life as it takes all types of people to reflect the communities they serve as well as being up to the challenge.
The RSPCA’s workforce needs to reflect and understand the diverse communities it works with, and so applications are actively encouraged from people of all backgrounds, regardless of age, gender, race, faith, sexual orientation, parental or relationship status. Applications are also encouraged from those who can speak the Welsh language.
Dermot added: “We aspire for, and celebrate, a diverse RSPCA inspectorate; and our organisation aims to be a bastion for diversity and fairness. As such, we passionately encourage applications from people of all backgrounds, as we strive to reflect and understand the diverse communities we work with and help across England and Wales each and every day.
“With a vacancy in Wales in particular, we’re also really eager to get applications from Welsh-speaking candidates – as we look to carry out more of our frontline work in both of Wales’ official languages, where possible to do so.”
AROs working in Wales include Ellie West – who has worked for the RSPCA for 13 years, and covers the West Wales area.
Recent rescues undertaken by ARO West include saving a cat from a gin trap, returning an otter to the wild who’d had a run-in with an electric fence and the rescue of five bats found in a refuse sack on an A road.
She said: “I absolutely love being an Animal Rescue Officer. I feel so privileged to be in a position to make a real difference to the lives of animals every day through my work.”
“From wildlife to pets, and so much more, no two days are the same – but the feeling of saving an animal, or returning wildlife back to where it belongs, never grows old.”
“I’d urge anyone who loves animals and wants to experience the same things to apply for this unique opportunity. From our rich abundance of wildlife, to countless pet-loving homes, Wales is such a great place to work in animal welfare and this role really makes a difference on the frontline.”
Just as important as physical fitness is psychological and emotional strength. As well as coping with distressing, disturbing and heartbreaking situations involving animals, candidates need strong people and communication skills as well as empathy to handle difficult, extremely emotional and sometimes confrontational situations.
Everyone at the RSPCA is expected to live by its core values – compassion, commitment, integrity, expertise and being an inspiration.
Successful candidates will spend a year training – there is a video online of what to expert. To apply please visit the RSPCA website by July 23.
The RSPCA is also recruiting for a regional press officer, to focus on their work in Wales and the borders. The part-time, fixed term contract role is an opportunity to manage the proactive and reactive media work in Wales and the border counties of Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Shropshire and Staffordshire – with flexible working available. More information on how to apply is available on the RSPCA website. Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com