October is Women’s History Month in Canada, “a time for Canadians to celebrate the achievements of women and girls throughout our history and recognize the trailblazing women who have shaped our country and way of life.” Among those women are a number of biologists, ecologists, and conservationists including AIWC founder Dianne Wittner.
Dianne completed a degree in biology at the University of Calgary and began working as a wildlife rehabilitator in British Columbia. Later she returned to Alberta where she opened the Alberta Institute for Wildlife Conservation in her basement. Dianne received the Western Legacy Award in 2012 for her work which recognizes Albertans that “promote western values and aim to preserve western heritage, pride and integrity within their community” (Leaving a lasting western legacy). Dianne’s contributions to conservation activities consistently exemplified these characteristics.
AIWC is now located next door to her former residence and continues to admit thousands of wild lives every year. The centre is currently managed by a talented team of committed women with complementary skills and expertise that contribute to public engagement, classroom education, volunteer coordination, and animal welfare all while supporting the centre’s primary focus of rehabilitating and releasing injured or orphaned wildlife. You can read more about these capable women who inspire us daily on AIWC’s Staff page.
You too can contribute to the centre’s activities by volunteering your time, donating goods from our Wish List or sponsoring a patient. Further opportunities for assisting AIWC’s efforts are also available under the Support Us tab of our website.
“Today, women, girls, men, and boys continue the quest for equality and inclusion in all areas of Canadian life.” Let us know how you will celebrate this year’s Women’s History Month and heroines of conservation in the comments!
By Stephanie Ruddock, AIWC Volunteer