Hello, Helen and Ian here.
We started doing this 4 years ago to give "respite" to people fostering animals for rescue organisations while we were looking for a new rural property. It has been a full-time occupation ever since.
We always try to help when animals are in need; sometimes separating to look after two properties at the same time!
Over the past 4 years our assignments have included a 540 acre livestock farm in NZ, a 120 acre nature and wildlife sanctuary, a small farm between Lismore and Byron Bay (five times) with horses dogs (Great Danes), horses, alpacas and sheep, repeat assignments on several neighbouring smallholdings, a racehorse stud farm near Murwillumbah, a 280 acre stock farm on Dorrigo..... and many more rural and urban properties with every type of house and animal you can imagine in Australia, NZ and UK (well... almost every type).
We still haven't had time to search properly for our own place!
I hope this describes our motive and experience adequately.
And now the resume:
Helen is Australian, studied English at Newcastle University, was a manager with the health department in WA then moved to UK with Ian, where she was a manager with Cornwall County Council for 21 years.
On returning to Australia in 2001 she helped run their 540 acre property while developing her textile skills and is now a renowned textile artist.
Ian came overland from UK in 1973 and is a dual citizen. He is retired after a career heading overseas development, construction, and maritime heritage projects for governments, ngo's and the commercial sector in many countries.
He is practical, adaptable and able to fix most things - having worked in remote parts of the world where you have to make everything yourself. In other words, a handy all-rounder.
Degree and post-graduate qualified in Rural Estate Management (true, he qualified for the job from Royal Ag. College in UK), Architecture and Archaeology, Ian is ready to apply his experience, training and skills on your behalf.
Both: have worked with animal welfare and wildlife organisations, and have trained in animal care and husbandry (WSPA, SPCA, WIRES, GAWF, Blue Cross India, Cats Protection League, Royal Ag llege etc.).
Ian is never happier than when working with trees and in the garden. He also has lots of experience with solar and pools.
Be assured, we will look after your home, pets and other animals with love and competence while you are away.
Oh yes, we are quiet (certainly not party types), do not smoke and are vegetarian - but quite normal really!
So please consider us as your home and animal carers and, if needed, also as experienced P.A.'s, estate/farm managers and property maintenance professionals - we can provide professional estate management and project management by arrangement, if required.
Whatever you and your animals may need, we can provide leaving you to travel without a care.
Please call or to discuss your requirements and for telephone or contacts for Australian, UK or NZ referees (including senior police officers).
REFERENCES: We and our clients prefer real, live references by , telephone or . Please ask for contacts.