Annual Volunteer Appreciation

Posted September 4, 2020 by Vindi Sekhon

Our annual volunteer appreciation is a chance for Wildlife Rescue staff to recognize our volunteers and all the work they do to help local wildlife. This year we held a virtual ‘Year in Review’ event on Zoom featuring a live look into the wildlife hospital and a taster workshop on blue-listed species.

We are so lucky to be celebrating over 200 volunteers who’ve dedicated their time to Wildlife Rescue this past year and this quote speaks to 2020 perfectly, “There’s no time like the present, and no present like the time” – James Durst. Together we survived a global pandemic and 90% of our volunteers stuck by us. As well, about 50 new volunteers joined us in our cause! This proves how much our volunteers care and we want them to know that their time is truly one of the most generous gifts they can give to us, as it allowed us to keep our doors open for animals in need.


Staff showed their support by writing personalized thank you message to each volunteer and presenting awards to some of our greatest champions. Check out this slideshow if you missed the event.

During the event, 9 exceptional volunteers were recognized with an award. Many volunteers were nominated with glowing reviews and after much deliberation the winners were:

  • Friendliest Face – Jim Scribner
  • Rockstar Rookie – Otto Wille
  • Outstanding Commitment – Giselle Bonney
  • Exceptional Leadership – Tina Stehr
  • Most Valuable Volunteer in the Wildlife Hospital – Gemma Almendros
  • Most Valuable Volunteer in Helpline & Admissions – Kirstin Takashiba
  • Most Valuable Volunteer in Transport, Rescue & Release – Liz Edmunson
  • Volunteer of the Year – Wilf Meier

Wildlife Rescue branded tote bags were kindly donated by Clubcard Printing, and vouchers for a free bag of coffee were generously donated by Ethical Bean Coffee.

Our Wildlife Hospital, Support Centre, Development & Volunteer programs each presented the work we have been doing over the past year highlighting interesting species, successful releases –including the pelican, successful campaigns, and results from the Volunteer Satisfaction Survey.

Next, we went live to the Wildlife Hospital where Emma (Wildlife Technician) gave us a peek into what goes on behind the scenes while feeding some resident fledglings and a unique kingfisher.  We were impressed by its surprising head-to-foot ratio and learned about the importance of waterproofing for this species.

Image credit: Paul Steeves Photography

To end the evening, Brandon (Jr. Wildlife Technician) presented a taster workshop about the importance of blue-listed species and highlighted a few case studies we’ve rehabilitated this year including a Steller’s jay, barn swallows and the western small-footed bat. We all felt proud to be part of helping vulnerable species in BC.

Thank you to every Wildlife Rescue volunteer for all the work you do!


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