YELLOWSTONE WILDLIFE SANCTUARY
Giving Tuesday is such an interesting concept when you think about it… with even more interesting timing. According to various reports on the Internet, “Giving Tuesday” started sometime around 2011 or 2012, making the concept about ten years old. From a timing standpoint, it’s the “after” you have thought of yourself, think of others part, which is interesting. Especially because “after” we are done shopping, we give to people or organizations who do nothing but give? Regardless, thinking of others and how we can continuously do more to help should always be a priority for us as individuals, and as organizations.
This Tuesday, November 30th, let’s get generous and support those people or organizations who dedicate their lives to giving.
Like everything in life, we all have choices regarding who and what we support. At Mountain Khakis we partnered with Yellowstone Wildlife Sanctuary (YWS) a little less than three years ago. Quite simply, we felt that YWS was a great fit for us based on the following reasons:
They come from the same area as us. The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem.
We love animals and they provide sanctuary for animals unable to live in the wild.
We met Gary Robson, the Sanctuary’s Director, and believed in his vision and team’s management capabilities.
Ever since, we have done our best to provide support with monthly food donations for Speedy the Bison, and more importantly create awareness around the incredible job that they do.
Ahead of Giving Tuesday, we sat down with Gary Robson to catch up on what’s been happening at the Sanctuary. As always, it was a great conversation.
YWS is now 35 years old and based on the challenges of the Pandemic it’s no surprise revenue has been down.
Mountain Khakis was incredibly proud to maintain our support of the Sanctuary through the Pandemic and that helped for sure, however additional individual donations also greatly assist in much needed operating funds for the Sanctuary. When you think about the Sanctuary is 35 years old, that means repair work and maintenance are incredibly important, ongoing, and in need of our support.
Despite some of the challenges of the time, it’s no surprise that Gary’s team, being incredibly focused, driven, and determined, was still able to execute several key initiatives that are incredibly exciting.
YWS was able to open a new wolf habitat a couple of years ago when they took in new wolves from another Sanctuary that unfortunately was forced to close. The good news for the wolves is that the YWS habitat is ten times the size of the space they had at the sanctuary they vacated, and they’ve settled in incredibly well. These wolves were raised in captivity so unfortunately will never be able to go back into the wild.
YWS also opened a new fox habitat, and they’re also working on a new bison enclosure for our friends Speedy & Luna. They were also able to add new habitats for some off-display birds and upgrade the shelter and shade in many of the other habitats.
Doug, the baby bobcat, is one of the new kids in the Sanctuary. Doug was able to meet his fellow bobcat named Bob through a fence as they get used to each other. Little Doug, who was orphaned, will receive a lot of love from his new family at YWS.
Chris, a new Red-tailed Hawk was welcomed at YWS, which means that they now have a male and female pair of these stunning birds of prey. Remember, YWS is simply for rehabilitation and sanctuary and does not breed the animals. Chris is unable to fly yet will find comfort and peace in his new home.
Both Doug & Chris came to YWS via the State of Montana which is an interesting story. The laws around wildlife in Montana were written many years ago before the American Sanctuary Association had been established meaning it was challenging for the State to transfer animals to the Sanctuary. Thankfully, Montana’s current administration set about changing these rules, and now YWS cares for animals brought to them from the State. Incredible care, in an incredible facility.
Another feathered friend, in much need of rehabilitation, is Remy the special needs raven. Remy, who has captured a lot of hearts, was badly hurt attempting to learn how to fly after being born in April of 2021. After Remy’s accident the raven will never be able to fly and has brain damage, and unfortunately does not see very well. YWS will give Remy the constant care and attention needed including being hand-fed as they care for the bird who could live as long as 30 years. Remy joins the Sanctuary’s three other ravens who are 8 and 18 years old – the third Raven’s age is unknown.
Excited about the new fox habitat is Clare the baby fox who was named after a long-time serving volunteer and Board Member. Another orphan, Clare was found by farmers who had been observing the little one that had been abandoned by her mother and two siblings. Had she have not been brought into the Sanctuary by the farmers, little Clare would have surely starved to death. She will be well fed in her new home at YWS.
speedy turned 20!
Like many of us unable to throw large gatherings and parties through the Pandemic, Speedy our Bison had to have somewhat of a toned-down celebration for her 20th Birthday. Despite the restrictions of the time, Gary and the team at YWS still managed to mark Speedy’s birthday with a game of Cow-Pie Bingo. For those of you who don’t know what Cow-Pie bingo is, we’ll leave that with you to research for yourself. Needless to say, a good time was had by all!
In closing, we hope this update not only gives you some information on the happenings at YWS but also inspires you to donate what you can to this organization this Giving Tuesday. One day to show our support to an amazing group of humans who dedicate their entire lives to helping these beautiful animals in need. Whether it’s YWS or another charity of your choice, our team at Mountain Khakis wants to thank you for supporting, at any level, with your monetary support or time.
This Giving Tuesday, and every day, our team at Mountain Khakis thanks the team at YWS for all the incredible work they do in providing physical and mental support for these animals unable to live alone in the wild. More broadly, we thank ALL who work tirelessly to support humans, animals, ecosystems, and mother nature through your selfless acts of love, compassion, and support.