Think Wild Announces Lead Gift to Build New Wildlife Hospital

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Leaders of Think Wild, a nonprofit organization providing wildlife education and Wildlife Hotline services in Central Oregon, recently announced they have received a $325,000 funding commitment toward building a native wildlife hospital and full-time Wildlife Hotline and education in Bend. The lead gift comes from the Otter Cove Foundation, through a local resident who prefers to remain anonymous.

The lead gift from the Otter Cover Foundation also comes with a challenge to raise an additional $325,000 in order to establish three years of operating support for the new facility. Friends and supporters of wildlife gathered Thursday to plan a Think Wild Founders Circle in order to meet the $325,000 challenge. The event was attended by a number of wildlife professionals who endorsed the Think Wild plan and expressed their support.

At the event, local wildlife rehabilitator Gary Landers spoke to the unique and needed role Think Wild can play in coordinating the region’s response to injured wildlife. “Our goal for Central Oregon wildlife rehabilitation is to have a central place where seven days a week, 365 days a year the public can call and get help for injured wildlife,” he said. “Think Wild can fill a need in our community by creating a hub and fostering the cooperative spirit of rehabilitators for the benefit of wildlife.”

Think Wild’s leaders are currently working on designing, planning and building a facility with space to coordinate care for injured and orphaned native birds and mammals in partnership with the regional area wildlife rehabilitators. Early plans for Think Wild also include a full-time Wildlife Hotline and community outreach campaign focused on conflict prevention, allowing Think Wild to fulfill its vision to provide a voice for Central Oregon’s native wildlife.

“We are excited by the opportunity given by our lead donor to pursue the goal of building a wildlife hospital,” said Reese Mercer, Think Wild Board Member who is leading formation of the Founders Circle. “We look forward to working with others to make this dream a reality.”

www.thinkwildco.org • 458-206-3474

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