Ever since I started making art with animal remains in 1998, I’ve donated a portion of the money I made to various environmental groups. Many of these have been animal-focused groups like Defenders of Wildlife or Wolf Haven International or the Scottish Wildcat Association. However, it’s also important to remember that it’s no good to protect animals if they have nowhere to go, and habitat loss is the leading cause of endangerment and extinction of animal and plant species. While animal-focused nonprofits often do work with habitat restoration and preservation, it’s also important to support those who are focusing more specifically on these ecosystems and everything that lives in them.
So this time around, when I was deciding who was going to get my donation, I chose the Lower Columbia River Estuary Partnership, based right here in Portland. I’ve volunteered with them before, helping to plant native trees in the watershed. But I also wanted to help fund their activities, and so a check with part of the money I made this past weekend at FaerieWorlds is headed their way.
Through them I also found out about Willamette Riverkeeper. Where the LCREP focuses on the larger artery of the Columbia River, this organization is solely dedicated to the restoration and protection of the Willamette, a large river that flowers through Portland and meets up with the Columbia. I became a member with them as well and am hoping to volunteer with them once things quiet down a bit more.
While these both focus on large rivers, by necessity they have to take the entire system into account—smaller tributaries, plus the plants and animals that rely on them to survive. I am happy I was able to support both of them, even a bit, and I look forward to seeing more of their good work.sity they have to take the entire system into account—smaller tributaries, plus the plants and animals that rely on them to survive. I am happy I was able to support both of them, even a bit, and I look forward to seeing more of their good work.
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