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FreeMe - Rescuing Suburban Indigenous Wildlife Print E-mail
Wednesday, 14 November 2007
FreeMe - Rescuing Suburban Indigenous WildlifeEach year thousand of birds, mammals and reptiles living in gardens or suburbs become orphaned, sick or suffer injuries. Most veterinarians do not have facilities to cater for wildlife, leaving would-be rescuers unable to determine what to do with them. FreeMe Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre has filled this gap and the public can now bring wildlife to them for specialised treatment, care and rehabilitation until they can be released.

FreeMe, a rehabilitation centre for indigenous wildlife based in the north of Johannesburg, was founded in 1997 by a group of trained rehabilitators who realised that there was not enough organised care for suburban indigenous wildlife.

They are staffed and operated by a full-time manager, two support staff members and a group of trained volunteers. The centre is open seven days a week and they welcome calls from the public asking for advice and support.

FreeMe relies on members of the public to bring compromised animals to the centre, and for notification if there are wild animals in distress. In emergencies such as oil-spills volunteers may travel to a locality to rescue and assist wildlife.

There is no conservation without education
FreeMe strives to promote a responsible attitude to wildlife and the environment through education programmes, newsletters, publicity and advice. Volunteers continuously learn new skills and knowledge through contact with similar organisations and experts in the field.

They operate under an Open Permit granted by the Gauteng Department of Nature Conservation and uphold the highest standards. All indigenous wildlife is accepted and every creature, big or small, receives specialised care. 

FreeMe is a self-funded registered non-profit organisation, relying solely on the generosity of the public through donations, bequests, membership, sponsorship and voluntary assistance in all aspects.


Aims and objectives of FreeMe 

  • To rescue, rehabilitate and release indigenous wildlife onto carefully chosen reserves and conservancies.

  • To educate the public through the use of lectures, newsletters, advertising, support and advice. Without education there is no conservation.

  • To train volunteers in the care of animals while upholding the highest ethical standards and working closely with a panel of vets.

  • To operate breeding projects assisting with maintaining and increasing borderline indigenous populations of animals.

  • To network with similar organisations and experts in the field, sharing knowledge and skills, locally and internationally.

  •  To fundraise to develop and sustain a self-funded centre that relies on donations, bequests, sponsorships and membership.

How you can help

Become a FreeMe Member
FreeMe is a self-funded registered non-profit organisation, relying solely on the generosity of the public. For their annual membership fee, FreeMe members receive a quarterly magazine filled with news and stories about our latest cases; an online newsletter is in the pipeline.

If you would like to help FreeMe by becoming a member, please download the pdf, fill in your details and fax the form to us at 011 807 6814. Payment options appear on the form.

Download the membership form here: Membership PDF

Online Donations
If you would like to make an online donation, you can donate to us via the GreaterGood SA website .

Become a Volunteer
Almost all of the work at FreeMe is done by volunteers - morning and afternoon shifts feed, clean and nurse patients in the clinic and aviaries; couriers bring injured animals from their area to the FreeMe centre; others raise funds, fix plumbing, build cages ... whatever your talent, FreeMe can use it!

If you would like to help FreeMe by donating your time, please download the pdf, fill in your details, and fax the volunteer form to us at 011 807 6814. We will contact you with information on when the next orientation course will be held. Volunteer Form PDF

Book a School Talk
If you would like our educational team to visit your school or club to give a presentation about the work FreeMe does, please contact: The FreeMe office at 011 807 6993.

View the FreeMe Wishlist
FreeMe's wishlist ranges from tools to bird food, washing up liquid to infrared light bulbs. View the  FreeMe wishlist

Most of us do not like thinking about death, especially our own, but making a Will is something we all have to do if we want to ensure that our loved ones are taken care of in the future. We know that this can seem a daunting prospect. However, in reality, making or updating your Will is a straightforward process, and is the only way to ensure that your wishes are carried out in the way you want them to be.

Making or updating your Will is the best way to care for your family, friends, and even your pets. However, it can also help ensure that the causes you really care about are remembered as well. We hope that you will consider including a residual legacy to FreeMe Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre and in so doing, help us to continue the work we do in preserving and protecting our wildlife for all our children and grandchildren to enjoy in the future. 

If you care about our urban wildlife, the best way to support them is to support FreeMe. Your legacy can help thousands of wild animals and will make a real difference.

Learn more about FreeMe and how you can get involved by visiting, emailing them on This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it , or calling 011 807-6993.

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