Napa County is home to about 350 native animal species--from the gray fox to the barn owl. Sometimes, though, vehicles, tree trimmers and domestic pets pose a threat to creatures that live in our natural surroundings, like hawks and jackrabbits. Since 1991, a nonprofit called Wildlife Rescue Center of Napa County (WRCNC) has been swooping in to rescue wounded animals.
WRCNC is the only Napa County organization licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game to treat and rehabilitate injured, ill or orphaned wildlife, and then release the healthy critters back into their native habitat. More than 100 volunteer community members work with WRCNC, which handles nearly 600 animals each year; 10 volunteers, called "rehabbers," are certified in species-specific treatments that follow state and federal regulations.
WRCNC's largest project is its Songbird Clinic, which operates out of a temporary, donated space seven days a week from April through September, and provides intensive care to more than 250 debilitated birds, like robins and sparrows. Since WRCNC does not have a permanent clinic facility, it uses a satellite model to treat other animals: A local veterinarian's office serves as the intake center, and rehabbers use their homes as clinics.
WRCNC has an all-volunteer Board of six, and an annual operating budget of $44,000 that includes a 24-hour rescue hotline, a part-time volunteer coordinator, and costs for medical supplies. Individual donations cover the majority of WRCNC's expenses.
WRCNC's recently completed 10-year strategic plan revealed that a permanent rescue clinic and education center may be necessary in order for the nonprofit to continue to care for a large number of animals--right now, 20 percent of the wildlife are shipped off to other counties that have full-use clinics. The center also would serve as the intake point for injured wildlife and a training facility for WRCNC volunteers.
To that end, WRCNC wants to begin the planning process and needs $8,000 to hire a consultant. The consultant will guide WRCNC and community members through focus group sessions that will culminate in a final report that details how the facility will be used, as well as design specs.
WRCNC's goal with this phase of work is to determine the feasibility of a permanent center. Your support will help to create a permanent place to nurse our county's wildlife back to health.
Wildlife Rescue Center of Napa County
P.O. Box 2571
Napa, CA 94558
Contact: Phyllis Hunt, President