Animal World
Shining World Compassion Award: Caring for Aussie Wildlife Professor Steve and Dr. Rosemary Garlick

Everywhere in the world, we can observe and be touched by acts of kindness. People from all walks of life, faiths, and cultures extend themselves beyond the call of duty to help others unconditionally. Through their noble deeds, humanity as a whole is elevated.

To commend virtuous actions and encourage more people to be inspired by their examples, Supreme Master Ching Hai has lovingly created a series of awards, including the Shining World Leadership Award, Shining World Compassion Award, Shining World Hero and Heroine Awards, Shining World Honesty Award, Shining World Protection Award, Shining World Intelligence Award, and Shining World Inventor Award, to recognize some of the most exemplary, generous, caring, and courageous people who walk amongst us.

Professor Steve Garlick and his wife Dr. Rosemary Garlick, a physician, operate a peaceful wildlife refuge in the state of New South Wales, Australia, where injured native wildlife are lovingly rescued, cared for and then released back into their natural habitats. The kangaroo, one of Australia’s most iconic animals, is found nowhere else in the world.

Male kangaroos are called “bucks,” females are called “does” or “flyers” and infants are known as “joeys.” A “pinky” is a very young, furless joey that is basically in a fetal state.

We’ve mostly got kangaroos, but we have other macropods as well. We’ve got some wombats and we’ve got one baby echidna, so we’ve got quite a variety, wallaroos, (and) wallabies that are here.

Professor Garlick, a vegan and instructor at the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia conducts research in regional development theory and policy, applied ethics, wildlife welfare and other areas.

He also chairs the Wombat Protection Society of Australia’s ethics committee and provides scientific advice to the Australian Wildlife Protection Council. Even with their busy schedules, the compassionate couple has managed to rescue more than a thousand native animals. Let’s now learn how the refuge was started.

It started quite a number of years ago now, and like other people we see the injured animals on the road. We thought, well, we’ve got to try and do something about that. So we started quite small and eventually it’s grown to this, where we’ve completely taken over this cottage with animals. And so we’re really quite committed now, particularly to those injured animals. We thought, “Well we can apply some of our skills to this and so that’s what we do.”

We mostly take of the injured animals because we feel that there are few others that are looking after the injured animals.

Professor Garlick next discusses some of the reasons that animal rescue is needed in his area.

They’re either injured or they've been orphaned. In either case, they need a lot of attention to recover. And we have a pretty good success rate here.

Fence injuries are a problem, being with increased subdivision of rural areas and lots more fences going up. The kangaroos find their territory constrained even more and then they’ve got to negotiate fences. Not easy. If you're a big adult and can jump them, that's Okay, but if you're a small to medium size kangaroo, how do you get through the fence? Sometimes it can cause problems.

They get entangled in the wire, stranded in fences and unable to get out of the fence; the wire just wraps around their legs.

We've got a number of animals here, in fact, that have come to us because the mother has been shot.

Motor vehicles are probably another big, big one. Lots of motor vehicle accidents and you often see road kill but where there is a dead adult, it's distinctly possible there could be an orphan joey that results from that, which may or may not be injured. It may have some consequential injuries from the motor vehicle accident. It may have been thrown out of the pouch on impact. It may have a head injury or it may have fractures, whatever it might be.

The Garlicks dedicate long hours each day to rehabilitating and nurturing the animals. In many cases orphaned babies have to be bottle-fed by their human caregivers.

It varies from two, three or four feeds a day, depending on how small they are. The little ones, when they first come in, they have four feeds a day. Some people feed them six feeds a day.

This little one, Red, she’s a very nervous, affectionate little girl; she came in at about 500 grams as well. Another carer raised her and she’s been on holiday so we’ve been babysitting Red, so she’s only been with us a couple of weeks.

But you can see she’s already become very affectionate. Haven’t you darling? And that little one there is Sassy; she was also 500 grams when she came in. Another carer raised her, a very good pinky carer. She’s just here for the holidays as well; we’re babysitting her.

Many volunteers devote their valuable time and expertise assisting in the refuge’s rescue work.

We have an extremely good veterinarian that does house calls here every two weeks and gives us good advice on the kinds of treatment that’s needed. And he's also on the phone and gives us advice over the phone whenever we need it. So we're very fortunate to have access to a good veterinarian to help us.

When Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants returns we’ll meet more of the friendly, appreciative hoppers at the Garlicks’ refuge and feature the presentation of the Shining World Compassion Award to Professor Steve and Dr. Rosemary Garlick. Please stay tuned to Supreme Master Television.

Welcome back to Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants as we continue our interview with Professor Steven and Dr. Rosemary Garlick, who operate a wildlife refuge in the state of New South Wales, Australia and have thus far rescued over 1,000 native animals, including kangaroos, wallaroos, wallabies and wombats.

Kangaroos and their kin are highly social mammals that typically stay in groups known as “mobs” of 10 to more than 100 members that have a specific social structure. Mothers and their offspring can recognize one another’s calls and their bonds are extremely strong.

Dr. Rosemary Garlick shares some touching stories about helping our kangaroo friends. Here she relates saving the joeys of a helpless mother kangaroo who could not disentangle her babies from a fence.

I rescued two of her joeys from a fence. And the first joey, was hanging by one leg in the fence. I got her joey out of the fence and I checked the joey out and I thought “Well that joey can go back, it’s a minor wound.” And in a few months, it emerged as a perfectly healthy

I got a second one out and again Mum, on this occasion followed me home. I put the joey in an enclosure we've got at the back and put some food out for Mum and some water and she camped outside the enclosure for a week whilst I was repairing the damage to her baby.

Another time Steve has rescued a joey down the back. We've checked them out and I said, “Well, let’s go back and see if Mum’s there.” Mum was still there trying to find her joey, really distressed. And again we just put the joey down, walked away, and as soon as the joey called, the mother recognizes them from their call, she raced over and the joey hopped in the pouch.

In addition to their caring concern for wildlife, the kindhearted couple follows a compassionate vegetarian lifestyle, thus protecting both our precious environment and its defenseless animal inhabitants.

I never liked meat as a child, basically. I've always felt that way. I always thought, “Oh, that’s a dead animal that I'm being offered to eat,” and I found it quite off-putting, and I just always loved vegetables and fruit and vegetable products.

And Steve, when I met him, wasn't a vegetarian but we started to look at the alternatives and certainly it’s a much healthier lifestyle and you don't need to eat dead animals. You don't need to make animals suffer and I'm sure if a lot of people out there went to an abattoir and watched those animals go to their death, it would put them off. And the same with the kangaroos.

Learning of their selfless efforts to safeguard the lives of our beloved animal friends, Supreme Master Ching Hai honored the high-minded couple with the Shining World Compassion Award and made a kind contribution of US$5,000 to the refuge to further their work in serving animals in need.

The Garlicks’ beautiful crystal Award plaque reads: “In Recognition Of Unconditional, Pure Hearted Love And Noble Selfless Sacrifice, Nurturing Our Precious Native Wildlife Species, With Warm Hearted Care And Attention, With Compliments And Gratitude For Your Inspirational Example Of Loving Kindness, And Courageous Dedication To The Needs Of Our Animal Friends.”

The following is an excerpt from Supreme Master Ching Hai’s warm letter to the Garlicks.

This award is presented in recognition of your benevolent, courageous and loving efforts to care for, improve and save the lives of our beautiful Australian wildlife, thus ensuring our world is filled with a variety of colorful co-inhabitants. Your devotion to improving the lives of these iconic and adorable characters through your work with various organizations such as the Wombat Protection Societies of Australia, and the Australia Wildlife Protection Council, is also an inspiring undertaking.

For selfless nurturing and safeguarding the lives of our precious native fauna and tirelessly campaigning on their behalf, for encouraging a greater sense of empathy towards them and for uplifting our world with your inspirational example of love and kindness in action, we hereby applaud and celebrate the caring and warm hearted deeds of Professor Steve Garlick and Dr. Rosemary Garlick. With Great Honour, Love and Blessings, The Supreme Master Ching Hai

Thank you!

Professor Steve Garlick expressed his heartfelt appreciation for the recognition as follows.

I’d like to thank the Supreme Master and the (Supreme Master) Ching Hai International Association for this award. It’s certainly very unexpected. We do put a lot of time into these animals. But we don’t do it alone, we have some terrific helpers.

It really is a worthwhile cause and we again have a lot of gratitude to your organization for recognizing that and in giving us this award.

Once again I’d like to thank the Supreme Master.

The Garlicks have many potential uses for Supreme Master Ching Hai’s loving contribution.

There’s always equipment, things like microscopes that are useful in the care that we give these animals. And of course we spend thousands of dollars on medication, antibiotic dressings and etc. because we do look after a lot of injured animals.

We thank Professor Steve and Dr. Rosemary Garlick for their compassionate work rescuing and nursing our injured Australian wildlife back to health. May all the animals of this sunbathed land always thrive in happiness and safety.

For more information on Professor Steve Garlick, please visit

Thank you for your blessed company today on Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants. Coming up next is Enlightening Entertainment right after Noteworthy News. May Heaven’s protection always be with you.

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Please watch Caged for Life: The Endless Tears of Mother Pigs, this Tuesday, December 15, on Animal World: Our Co-Inhabitants.

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