ACT News

RSPCA ACT benefit concert with Ricki-Lee cancelled due to low ticket sales

The RSPCA ACT has cancelled a benefit concert, which was set to feature pop stars Ricki-Lee and Nathaniel, due to a lack of ticket sales.

The concert was scheduled to be held on Saturday February 14 at the National Convention Centre in Canberra.

RSPCA chief executive Tammy Ven Dange said she was disappointed with the cancellation of the event which was supposed to raise much-needed funds for the organisation.

"We had hopes that the community would get behind this first-time fundraising event. We must find a way to bring in additional funds to care for the more than 7000 animals we see every year."

The RSPCA ACT's limited funds have already been stretched, with delays in hearing animal cruelty cases draining the coffers, tying up valuable kennel space, and preventing the charity from helping other animals.

A recent court case of a woman who starved and neglected her dogs because she was "scared of the brown one" highlighted the frustrations the RSPCA had faced.

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The woman was fined just $800 and allowed to own pets again immediately.

The RSPCA has recently ramped up the numbers of animal cruelty cases it investigates, and is involved in about 20 before the ACT's courts.

The charity said the costs of continual delays to animal cruelty matters, some of which stretch past 12 months, have hit it hard.

Despite the underwhelming support for the benefit concert, Ms Ven Dange said the organisation will continue to try new things to help raise funds through events and donations.

"Obviously we have a lot of things going on … Right now, the cost of standing still is higher than the cost of trying something new," Ms Ven Dange said.

"We're hoping the Canberra community will get behind us. It's great to get all the thank-yous – and we get lots of that – but at the end of the day, it does cost us money to do what we do."

Those who purchased tickets to the concert will be contacted for a full refund.

- With Christopher Knaus

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