Elizabeth Melnick of Abbotsford devotes most of her life to caring for the injured, abandoned and sick little creatures that come into her care.
Squirrels, birds, raccoons, bunnies and more are nursed back to health around the clock by Melnick’s gentle hand.
This devotion leaves little time for her to generate the funds required – an estimated $150,000 in 2013 alone – to keep Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center running.
Melnick is thrilled whenever generous citizens come forward to help.
Most recently, this community support manifested itself through a Black Press online crowdfunding site called BlackPress4Good.
A campaign to collect donations toward wildlife food supplies generated $3,200 for the centre.
Melnick said this support is invaluable. For example, she currently pays about $500 a month to purchase mealworms and insect food for some of the wildlife.
This expense doubles during the peak period through the spring and summer.
Melnick said she is thankful to everyone who contributed to the campaign.
“I can’t tell you enough how much that’s appreciated,” she said.
Contributions can still be made to that campaign, while a second one has started on BlackPress4Good to raise funds for a nursery at the centre.
Melnick said the nursery is in desperate need of a sink, plumbing, new flooring and finishing.
The building is one of the most important functions at Elizabeth’s Wildlife Center, as this is where the sick and injured animals are brought for immediate attention.
The centre has been operating since 1986 with no paid staff, and the only government funding it receives is a $14,000 grant each year from the City of Abbotsford.
The rest of the money comes from fundraisers and donations.
More than 1,000 birds and small animals are admitted to the centre each year, with approximately half of those being fully rehabilitated and released back into the wild.
For more information or to make a donation, visit abbynews.com/4Good, where other local fundraising campaigns include the Abbotsford Hospice Society and the Starfish Pack Program.