Sawgrass Nature Center & Wildlife Hospital
Located in beautiful Coral Springs, Florida, the nature center dedicates to rescuing and rehabilitating native animals before releasing them back into the wild. However, for animals deemed non-releasable call the Sawgrass Nature Center and Wildlife Hospital their permanent home.
In addition to helping animals, the center provides a variety of interactive educational programs for adults, children, and visiting groups.
The WeLoveU Foundation East Coast Region mustered up volunteers to give a helping hand to the center by carrying out a cleanup on World Wildlife Day.
On Sunday, March 3, 2019, at 10 a.m., more than 30 WeLoveU volunteers traveling from Lake Worth, Florida stopped by the Coral Springs nature facility. The morning rays shined heavily on all participants with their vivid blue polos that read ‘WeLoveU.’
Volunteer Coordinator Heather Nelson welcomed the volunteers, explaining more about the center’s mission and their vision. Overall, the center expressed their gratitude for having so many supportive volunteers. That’s because they rely heavily on donations, grants, and volunteers with the upkeep of the facility.
Nelson said, “It really means a lot because without it, there is nothing we can do. Every living creature on the planet matters, whether it be wildlife or human. What you guys are doing is amazing! It is spreading love and community, so keep doing the work that you are doing!”
Afterward, she led the group of WeLoveU volunteers on a tour of the facility, educating them on the animals they currently care for. Heather also brought out an owl, showing the volunteers who their environmental efforts will help in the long-run.
Team Work Makes a Clean World
After their walk-thru tour, the 30 volunteers organized into four teams. They grabbed their gloves, trash bags, hedge clippers, rakes, shovels, and wheelbarrows provided by the nature center. Each team moved to their designated work site, ready to start!
A team focusing on the gardens removed prolific weeds. Meanwhile, the rest of the teams cleared out all the overgrown tall grass and weeds in areas the nature center will install an apiary for visitors to check out. An apiary is a collection of beehives where honey bees are kept.
Two and half hours later, WeLoveU volunteers tied up a total of 45 heavy-duty trash bags. This simple action inspired the Sawgrass Nature Center staff and visitors alike.
Executive Director, Allan Rose, responded to the group’s efforts by saying, “We would like to book you to come back!”
He extended an invitation to WeLoveU to attend their 3rd annual Orchid Festival in April. About 800-1,000 people attend from all over the country to browse over 20 orchid, plant, and garden vendors. At the festival, volunteers can set up an area to spread awareness about WeLoveU and its initiatives.
Volunteer Coordinator Heather Nelson said, “For us, it means everything! It is amazing to see people that really care about wildlife and about our environment, who are willing to come out when it is 90 degrees outside and trump through grass, snakes, spiders and bees to help us out.”
Working to Achieve SDG #15 & #17
WeLoveU’s partnership with the Sawgrass Nature Center and Wildlife encompasses the Sustainable Development Goals specifically Life on Land and Partnership for the Goals. By collaborating, ambitious targets of the 2030 Agenda will be achieved. The nature center’s passion for protecting the animals and WeLoveU’s dedication to preserving the environment brought forth wonderful results. Both parties look forward to working together again.
In addition, WeLoveU’s Clean World Movement continues to spread awareness around the world the importance of environmental protection in the face of climate change.
Read more about WeLoveU’s environmental cleanups.