We have some very important news we’d like to share with you:
Many of you already know that our Wildlife Center in Louisville has been closed since last fall due to some renovations by the building owner, namely mold and asbestos remediation. As it turns out, those renovations were much more extensive than we had previously thought and have left the building in need of extensive repairs before it can once again be used.
We have been grappling with a big decision over the past several months – do we put money into renovations or do we look for another place to call home? In the end, we decided to move and we will no longer be housed at the Wildlife Center in Louisville.
For us, two things clinched our decision: The first is that we have already grown out of the building at Ash Grove, and it was getting harder and harder to make that space work while providing the best possible care to our animals. The second is that the building at Ash Grove is just off the Platte River flood plain. Every time it floods, or rains too much, our basement there floods, putting our operations at risk. We were fortunate this spring – since we had not be working in the building our damage was minimal; however, it could have been much worse, and we need to think ahead to what could happen in the future.
We came to this decision in cooperation with Ash Grove, and are extremely grateful for their generosity and kindness over the past 8+ years. We are now looking for a new place to call home that is large enough for growth in the coming decade and that meets the needs of the very unique work that we do.
We are working diligently to find a commercial space in Omaha to house our Wildlife Center and a veterinary clinic for wildlife. This will allow for growth, optimal care and cleanliness, and for most of our veterinary care to be done on site. All of this will be a win for the animals and increase accessibility to the public.
This is a challenge, but it is one we welcome! We have grown so much in the past 10 years that we now care for more than 7,000 animals annually! This challenge is simply an opportunity to grow our facilities to meet the need we are already fulfilling in our community.
What this means for you (and the animals):
We will continue to take every wild animal in need of our care. We still have our site in Washington County and will continue to work there as we search for the right home.
You will not be able to drop off animals in Louisville; however, you can always take animals to the Nebraska Humane Society at 90th and Fort in Omaha. We pick up all wildlife there daily AND we will be increasing our number of daily pick-ups there for the forseeable future. You can also call us at 402-234-2473 to arrange to transfer an animal to us.
All of our operations in terms of wildlife rescue and education will continue as normal. We are committed to serving the animals and all of the people in our communities as we always have. This is a new adventure, and we love excitement!
If you have submitted a volunteer application, we DO still plan on holding trainings to get you started this spring! Please be patient as we work out those logistics since we are unable to use the building at Ash Grove. We’ll e-mail you soon!
We need your help. We do have pledged funds to help us make this transition, but we will need more to ensure that our new Wildlife Center allows for growth in the coming years, optimal animal care, veterinary services, and accessibility. We have set a capital campaign goal of $500,000 for 2019. These funds will assist in renovating our new home to accommodate our very special mission and to add more cages and facilities at our Washington County site.
You can make a donation online here or you can mail a check to NWRI, PO Box 24122, Omaha, NE 68124 -- Just write capital campaign in the memo line.
If you have questions about donating or would like to further discuss donations from a family foundation or retirement account, you can reach me directly at email@example.com or by calling our office at 402-234-2473.
We need your patience. It won’t be business as usual around here, at least not the “usual” you’re familiar with. We promise though that both our wild animal patients and you are our top priority and we’ll tackle this challenge with that in mind. We appreciate your patience as we make this transition.
Have we mentioned lately that this is our 20th anniversary year? That means we’re still determined to celebrate, no matter what we’re doing this summer. Don’t forget to check our our Upcoming Events page and join us out in the community!
We thank you for your support, and we hope to see you soon!
Laura Stastny, Executive Director