Featured Fundraiser: Wildlife Waystation
The Wildlife Waystation is a non-profit located in the Angeles National forest, north of the San Fernando Valley section of Los Angeles. Established over 35 years ago, the organization is a holding rehabilitation, medical and problem solving refuge for wild, exotic animals. They are determined to accept any animal, no matter the reasoning, free of charge. The Wildlife Waystation is supported through donations, bequests, fundraising events, memberships, and animal sponsorship programs alone.
How did Wildlife Waystation get its start?
Founded in 1976, by Martine Colette, the Wildlife Waystation is an internationally known, non-profit sanctuary that rescues, rehabilitates, provides medical care and when needed, provides permanent sanctuary for native wildlife and exotic animals. In 36 years, 76,000 animals have come through our sanctuary from Ireland, New Zealand, Canada and across the United States.
What motivates the Wildlife Waystation in its fundraising efforts?
The motivation for fundraising can be described in two words – “the animals.” Providing food, medical care, enrichment and maintaining enclosures and the surrounding grounds cost in excess of $150,000 a month.
What is a favorite part of working with Wildlife Waystation?
Knowing that all our efforts help the animals and having an opportunity to be so close to wild and exotic animals is a bonus few jobs provide.
Who benefits from your fundraising efforts?
Certainly “our” animals benefit as fundraising is what keeps us going. However, educating the public about why exotic animals should not be considered as “pets” and how to co-exist with native wildlife has always been a priority. Our trained staff is ready to answer any call when someone finds a baby bird or any other injured or orphaned native wildlife and our trained volunteers, often with some of our educational animals, attend events and make presentations before civic organizations and in schools to provide information on these important topics.
What advice do you have for aspiring fundraisers?
Identify your needs, find the proper methods to convey them to your target audience – and have the passion to convey the message.
What goals are you trying to reach by fundraising?
Our goals are to continue to provide care for the over 400 animals in our care, continue our efforts to help more animals in the future and continue to broaden our educational programs to both children and adults.
Do you have any additional notes or stories about your cause you would like to share?
Our animals come from a variety of situations and places; Two orphaned grizzly cubs from Montana, malnourished tigers from Ireland, chimpanzees from biomedical research, 23 lions and 3 ligers from Idaho or an owl that had been used as target practice by some kids. The Wildlife Waystation gave sanctuary and medical care to all of them and while the recession has had a serious, negative impact on all non-profits including the Wildlife Waystation, we remain committed to care for these animals and any others in need.