Includes fundraising, events, grants, and other income generating activities.

What’s In The President’s Budget for Refuges?

  • Post category:Funding
  • Reading time:1 mins read
bird with a seed in its mouth

The Biden administration has released the FY 2022 Budget Request, with big increases for National Wildlife Refuge System funding. Senior management of the National Wildlife Refuge System joined Friends on Tuesday, June 29th to review and discuss the budget.

Links to the recording and slides:

We want to thank our amazing and knowledgeable presenters:

  • Cynthia Martinez, USFWS, Chief of the National Wildlife Refuge System
  • Ketti Spomer, NWRS, Division Chief for Budget, Performance, and Workforce
  • Eric Alvarez, NWRS, Division Chief for Realty

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Grant for Friends/FWS Projects

  • Post category:Funding
  • Reading time:1 mins read
Two people cleaning a wood duck box.

The Association of Retired Fish and Wildlife Service Employees is soliciting proposals for projects that align with both the Association’s and the FWS’s conservation goals. They are currently seeking to award four grants in the range of $10,000 for direct project expenses. Ideally Friends proposals should be for a project supported by a partnership between Friends and the Service. Awarded funds will be donated directly to a Service account. Click here for detailed information.

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DID YOU TAKE PART IN THE CORFA/NWRA FRIENDS SURVEY?

I don’t know about you, but I don’t like it when I take part in a survey and then never hear anything about the survey results. So, for the 88 of you who generously gave your time to provide us with answers to our questions and for those of you who didn’t but would like to know what the respondents told us, here you go with the results of our recent Friends Webinar Survey.

I’m going for the focus of the survey first, specifically, what webinar topics seemed to be of most interest to the respondents of our survey. Look for information from other parts of the survey in coming blog posts.

We provided 11 general subjects that we thought might be of interest to Friends and asked them to rate their interest in each topic as High, Medium, Low, or No interest. Here’s what you told us:

The winning topic in both “High” plus “Medium” interest and with the most “High” interest votes was OUTREACH & COMMUNICATIONS. We need to dig deeper now and find out exactly what kinds of things you are interested in but be sure to check out our Webinar on June 9 at 2:00 Eastern, with Angie Horn the NWRA Southern California Regional Refuge Partnership Specialist and Angelina Yost, The FWS Urban Programs Coordinator. They will be telling us about successful ways of building community partnerships, no matter where your refuge is located. To register click here.


No surprise that the second most “High” plus “Medium” interest votes was FUNDRAISING, followed closely by GRANTS. We have one fundraising webinar planned for the near future and will continue to seek presenters and subjects related to these two high-demand topics for additional presentations in the future.


The last topic we will highlight was GOVERNANCE & LEADERSHIP. Again, this is such a broad topic that we will be looking for some guidance from you as to what aspects of governance and leadership you would like more information about.

A couple of the remaining topics are areas that we have already provided webinars on, specifically, ADVOCACY & LOBBYING and FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT.


The remaining topics were Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (JEDI), Organizational Planning, Technology, Volunteer Management, and Sales/Retail. While these topics did not receive as many “High” or “Medium” interest votes as the ones mentioned above, none of the suggested topics received fewer than 54% “High”/”Medium” votes. It looks like we have our work cut out for us. If you have ideas for a webinar in one of the categories listed or know of a Friends member/supporter who might be a good presenter on one of these topics, please reach out to Cheryl Hart or Joan Patterson. Thanks for your hel

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A Tool to Attract Donors: GuideStar Seal of Transparency

  • Post category:FundingManagement
  • Reading time:1 mins read
great blue heron next to pond

Are you aware of the benefits of obtaining a GuideStar Seal of Transparency? The Seal provides you an opportunity to provide donors and partners insight into your work beyond your tax return. This webinar presented by Aimee Arent, Executive Director of Friends of Ottawa NWR in Ohio, and Catherine Fox, Past-President of the Friends of the Hawaiian Islands, covered:

  • What is a GuideStar seal,
  • Why the seal is important to their groups,
  • How to obtain a seal, and
  • Benefits they have discovered

Here are the materials from their April 7, 2021 presentation:

We thank Aimee and Catherine for sharing their expertise. 

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The 2021 O’Brien Prize: An Opportunity For Your Refuge Friends Group!

  • Post category:Funding
  • Reading time:2 mins read
Lisa Hupp/USFWS

The National Wildlife Refuge Association has an opportunity for you!! Through the generosity of some of our great Board Members, we are announcing our 2021 O’Brien Prize, an annual award for Refuge Friends groups. The prize is named after Donal O’Brien III, a past Board Chair and longtime enthusiast of the National Wildlife Refuge System.  Don is a generous supporter of the great work we do for national wildlife refuges and is very impressed by the dedication and effectiveness of Refuge Friends groups.

This year we are offering one $2,500 prize. Please see our application. It should be pretty easy and take little time for you to fill it out. Please email the completed form to Caroline Brouwer, cbrouwer@refugeassociation.org or reply to this email by May 5th. We plan to announce the award recipient at the end of May. 

Thank you for everything you do for your Refuge and for the National Wildlife Refuge System. We at the National Wildlife Refuge Association are very proud to call you all our partners and recognize the very important work you all do, every day, every week, and year after year for all national wildlife refuges across the country. 

Thank you,

Geoffrey L. Haskett
President, National Wildlife Refuge Association

Continue ReadingThe 2021 O’Brien Prize: An Opportunity For Your Refuge Friends Group!