I have received many E-Mails regarding “Well what can I do”. Well readers it’s like one of our famous Presidents said. To paraphrase John F. Kennedy, it’s not what wildlife can do for you, it’s what you can do for wildlife. (I might have got that quote messed up a little :-) , but you get the message.
My message is simple, if you have scanned the web looking for information on Wildlife Organizations, you will find many sites. Most of the well known organizations are wonderful and perform their function admirably. Almost all of them ask you to join their Organization, just simply send them your donation or membership fee. If you can afford this by all means do it. You will get a newsletter and probably a sticker to prove you are a member. Aside from a renewal application at the end of the year, this is about all you can expect.
I reiterate, most of these Organizations are doing wonderful work. BUT all large organizations are burdened with high overhead costs, including salaries, advertising, office space, etc. Now just what part of your dollar you send goes towards wildlife rehabilitation?
Perhaps rehabilitation of the sick and wounded isn’t a priority in your opinion. In that case, please send your donations on to one of these large organizations.
I have been a Wildlife Rehabilitator for over 20 years and the only things I have ever received from one of these organizations are invitations to seminars. While the information presented at these seminars may be useful, as a wildlife rehabilitator, I have been unable to attend because the costs of such seminars are prohibitive. Most people are not aware that as rehabilitators, all costs of Wildlife rehabilitation, such as food, medicine, bandages, etc, is paid out of our own pockets, and truly for the love for wildlife.
This brings us back to the question I hear so often. “WHAT CAN I DO?” If you truly want to help Wildlife and see your donation work in your area, Contact your LOCAL Wildlife Rehabilitator. Most of them have a “Wish List” a mile long. Most of their wishes are meager and consist of items you may have around the house and no longer need, such as old towels, dishes, bird cages, etc. They are also in desperate need of volunteers to help. Volunteer and you will get a better understanding of the rehabilitators plight, plus you will be doing your share.