As 2016 comes to a close, we look back on the past year and reflect on all of the challenges and successes to help us plan ahead for 2017.
Highlights of the Year:
- We have said “hello” to new staff:
- I am extremely happy to welcome onboard: Michelle, our Development and Communications Coordinator, Miranda, our Senior Wildlife Rehabilitator, and Katrina, our Education and Community Engagement Coordinator.
- We were fortunate to receive $100,000 from the Government of Alberta through their Community Facility Enhancement Program. This funding was assigned to our mortgage as debt reduction support. Over the coming years we aim to transform the house on AIWC’s property into an education centre.
- AIWC’s first children’s book, Scared Skunk written by authors Michelle and Denver Suttie, was launched! Scared Skunk is a perfect fit for children in grades K to 4, however, anyone at any age can learn from its true story and interesting skunk facts.
- Two volunteer orientation sessions were held with 40 new volunteers recruited. In 2015, volunteers donated over 10,000 hours to our organization, fulfilling a variety of roles such as: wildlife rehabilitation assistant, rescue driver, hotline responder, fundraising, and construction/site maintenance.
- 3,850 individuals were reached through our education program. Through outreach programming, we’re working to creating strong co-existence between Albertans and wildlife.
- A video of the baby beaver we have in care went viral in July on social media. It has since reached over 15 million people worldwide! The beaver kit continues to do well in care and hasn’t let fame get to him/her 😉
- In April, the board of directors and staff met to work on a strategic plan for the organization for the next 4 years. During this session, AIWC’s vision and mission were re-written. These are the guiding forces for everything we accomplish at AIWC, and they are as follows:
Vision: Every Wildlife Matters.
Mission: AIWC is committed to the rescue, rehabilitation, and release of injured and orphaned wildlife. We provide expert advice and education that fosters an appreciation of wildlife.
- Over 500 animals were released back into the wild where they belong!
This year has brought a large increase in the numbers of animals admitted to our centre. We attribute some of this to more awareness about AIWC, but also that human/animal encounters, and conflicts, are rising.
In 2015, we admitted 1,675 animals. 2016 has not yet come to a close and already we have admitted nearly 1,900 animals. 95%of the animals are injured or orphaned due to human activities. The most common causes of injury are window strikes, vehicle collision, hitting power lines, barbed wire, fishing line entanglement or ingestion, domestic cat and dog attacks, and exposure to toxins.
As the demand for our services increase, so does the pressure to ensure funding to keep AIWC operational now and in the future. Thank you for your wonderful support, and for generously contributing crucial funds to directly help wildlife.
It all comes down to this:
“We don’t own the earth. We are the earth’s caretakers. We take care of it and all the things on it. And when we’re done with it, it should be left better than we found it.”
― Katherine Hannigan, author.
Thank you for your continued support of AIWC.