Northern Lights Wildlife Society wins 2011 Aviva Community Fund

The Northern Lights Wildlife Society (NLWS) won $140,000 from the 2011 Aviva Community Fund. The Aviva Community Fund supports initiatives that have a positive impact on the community. 90 semi-finalists are chosen by popular vote, after which the top 30 finalists are evaluated by a panel of judges to determine 12 winners. Winners were announced on January 25, 2012.

NLWS is a Smithers-based volunteer-run non-profit registered charity that rehabilitates injured and orphaned juvenile wildlife back into the wild. The funding won by NLWS is going toward buying supplies to fence an additional 10,000 square feet to accommodate the rising numbers of cubs being admitted, and to furnish the area with shelter and activity opportunities. The manual labour will be performed by volunteers. The facility has been operating for 21 years without power or water on site, so funds will also go towards securing running water and electricity, as well as facility extensions and upgrades as funding permits. 

The society covers all of British Columbia and promotes peaceful coexistence with wildlife through education programs for schools and groups, and consulting with industries. NLWS is often the only resource between juvenile wildlife and death. In its 20+ years of operation, NLWS has rescued over 220 bears, and launched the world’s first grizzly project in 2007. It also works with university students from around the world, offering unique study opportunities with the animals in care.