Elizabeth Melnick at Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center in Abbotsford. (Abbotsford News file photo)

Elizabeth Melnick at Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center in Abbotsford. (Abbotsford News file photo)

Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center in Abbotsford takes fundraising hit due to pandemic

Centre desperately in need of new outbuildings to house and care for small creatures

Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center in Abbotsford is asking for donations to rent a commercial trailer, or purchase a refurbished one, after the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted its ability to raise money for more permanent buildings.

Elizabeth Melnick, the centre’s founder, said weather and time have damaged the facility’s outdoor wooden rehabilitation buildings, and they need to be replaced.

But, like most non-for-profit organizations during the pandemic, the centre has taken a huge hit to the donations it receives.

“In the meantime, in order to continue operating, a temporary solution is to rent a commercial trailer(s) and adapt it to our needs, while the existing buildings are demolished and funds can hopefully be raised for new buildings,” Melnick said in a press release.

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Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center receives no provincial or federal funding, and its operations budget is dependent on visitors to the facility, who often donate when they drop off wildlife needing care, and on its two main annual fundraising events, which had to be cancelled.

Although the centre continues to accept wildlife, it is, in effect, closed to the public.

The site is one of B.C.’s main wildlife rehabilitation centres, and focuses on the care and rehabilitation of small mammals and birds. It has been serving the Lower Mainland and beyond for 34 years.

Its services include providing nutrition, medication and veterinary services to small creatures such as rabbits, opossums, squirrels, hummingbirds and crows until they are able to be released back to the wild.

Melnick said the costs of these services keep rising.

She said all donations, large or small, are gratefully appreciated. They can be made online at elizabethswildlife.ca by using PayPal or by mailing to PO Box 15015, Abbotsford, V2S 8P1.

She said, subject to COVID-related restrictions, also needed is the donated assistance of carpenters, plumbers and other able-bodied people to help put put the buildings together in the future. Those interested are asked to call the centre at 604-852-9173.



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