|Dear Fellow International Bird Rescue Supporters,
I first heard about International Bird Rescue (Bird Rescue) following an oiled bird incident near Ventura, California in 2005. I had just retired from 35 years at IBM and was reading the Los Angeles Times when a description of Bird Rescue’s lifesaving work piqued my interest. At the time, I couldn’t have told you the difference between a pigeon and a pelican, but their work resonated with one of my strongest worldviews.
Humans are one of millions of species on the planet, yet we are the only ones in the position to destroy (or choose to protect) the rest. I value biodiversity and often find myself asking what we can do about things like habitat destruction and pollution, and what I can do to effect a change. I decided to attend Bird Rescue’s next volunteer orientation.
Ever since retiring I had been on the hunt for a nonprofit to get involved with; I have always liked to be committed to something bigger than myself, but coming off of a career at IBM, my standards were extremely high. I was looking for a group whose mission was clear and passionate, but it also needed to be a strong, ethical organization with smart, capable people. I needed to respect their use of resources and feel not only their passion but also their professionalism.
International Bird Rescue swept me off my feet in every single one of these categories. They ethically, intelligently, passionately and professionally cleaned the oil off birds – but that was not all. I soon learned that, in addition to worldwide oil spill response, International Bird Rescue cares for over 5,000 birds a year at their Los Angeles and San Francisco Bay Wildlife Centers, and the purchase of food, supplies and medicine for the birds at the centers is only made possible by donors like you and I.
After attending that first orientation, I committed to volunteering in the Los Angeles Wildlife Center for four hours a week. Four hours turned into a full day, a full day turned into two, and before I knew it I was the one teaching Saturday morning volunteer orientations!
Jay Holcomb, now International Bird Rescue’s Director Emeritus, asked me to join the board of directors in 2007, and over the years I have learned to feel just as passionate about donating to International Bird Rescue as I do about volunteering; the reason being that no matter how hard working and committed our volunteers are (and they are!), aquatic bird rehabilitation costs money.
It is easy for me to be enthusiastic and energetic about supporting International Bird Rescue’s rehabilitation efforts because they are consistently practical and wise in the use of resources and always keep a keen focus on giving each avian patient the best possible care.
This is why I feel so comfortable asking you to give generously to International Bird Rescue, during this holiday season when opportunities to give abound. I chose International Bird Rescue as an avenue to effect change, and I ask that you consider doing the same. 5,000 or more seabirds and other aquatic birds will thank you over the course of 2012.
All the best for the holiday season and beyond,