Harwich duo’s bird rescue dreams soar despite cancer diagnosis

A selfless rescue couple worked tirelessly to save the injured birds despite facing transformational challenges themselves.

Amy Lee, 30, founded Wonderful Wings in 2018 as a bird rescue and placement service in Harwich.

A few months later, she is joined by Charlie Fenner, a 37-year-old volunteer whose decision to adopt a parrot leads her to become Amy’s rescue partner.

The Dovercourt duo helped nearly 300 wild birds last year, while also hosting around 60 pets.

Amy Lee, 30, and Charlie Fenner, 37 thanks to donations from Argos

But when Charlie was diagnosed with breast cancer in October 2021, it meant they had to drastically reduce the number of birds they were caring for.

Charlie said, “I always sit on social media and give advice to people and lead them.

“I have a PICC line inserted in my arm and the risk of infection is very high, so temporarily I had to minimize the animals we have here and involve my children more.

“Many animals have gone to foster families and some of them have fallen in love with the animals and have decided to adopt them for good.

“Once the PICC line is removed and I feel better, I’ll be back on board. ”

Gazette: Charlie's son Saxon Carney, 9 with Dickie and Gremlin, two abandoned green-cheeked conuresCharlie’s son Saxon Carney, 9 with Dickie and Gremlin, two abandoned green-cheeked conures

Until then, most of the responsibility for the rescue will fall on the kind-hearted founder.

Amy said: “The first thing Charlie told me when she was diagnosed was that she felt guilty about having to take a step back.

“She didn’t think of anything else.”

Amy, who wanted to be a vet when she was growing up, founded Wonderful Wings when she realized the area was running low on bird rescues.

Gazette: Wonderful Wings Rescue takes care of domestic and wild birdsWonderful Wings Rescue takes care of domestic and wild birds

She added, “I’ve always loved animals and the way people are these days doesn’t really care and I don’t like it.

“We have also had quite a few cases of neglect – we have rabbits that weighed only 600 grams.

“It’s also very difficult when you have defeats, but you have to take the good with the bad.

“We do it to know that we have changed lives.”

To help visit Wonderful Wings on Facebook.

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