NWRA’s Quarterly Call on Legislative & Policy Issues

  • Post category:Advocacy
  • Reading time:1 mins read
orange wild flowers

Thank you to all that attended NWRA’s Refuge Friends Quarterly Call. As promised, below are links to the recording and other materials from and mentioned during the webinar.

If you have any additional questions feel free to reach out to Caroline Garrett Brouwer, Vice-President of Government Affairs for the National Wildlife Refuge Association.

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NWRA’s 2021 Molly Krival Refuge Friends Group of the Year

  • Post category:News
  • Reading time:1 mins read

Congratulations to the Friends of St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge, the recipient of National Wildlife Refuge Association’s (NWRA) Molly Krival Refuge Friends Group of the Year for 2021. Robin Will, the Refuge Ranger/Liaison at St. Marks NWR, has described the Friends accomplishments as “33 years of excellence”. Here’s Phillip M. Pollock, President of the Friends, accepting the award.

Continue ReadingNWRA’s 2021 Molly Krival Refuge Friends Group of the Year

The Link — Fall 2021 Newsletter

  • Post category:News
  • Reading time:3 mins read
Fall 2021 issue of The Link

The Link is a quarterly newsletter produced in coordination between the National Wildlife Refuge Association and Coalition of Refuge Friends & Advocates.

Two years ago, the Coalition of Refuge Friends and Advocates (CORFA) and the National Wildlife Refuge Association (NWRA) formally agreed to begin working together to advocate on behalf of Friends groups around the country. While NWRA has been around since 1975, CORFA is newer, and we wanted to take this opportunity in this edition of The Link to highlight our partnership and explain who CORFA is. 

With missions focused on national wildlife refuges and hatcheries plus thousands of members nationwide with the passion to pursue those missions, refuge and hatchery Friends groups (hereafter referred to as “Friends”) are unique in the nonprofit world. Further, if you consider that a majority of those Friends groups are led and managed by volunteers, you may find yourself shaking your head in amazement. “How do they do it?” you may be asking.

Well, besides passionate, professional leadership and committed U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service partners, Friends groups can rely on the Coalition of Refuge Friends and Advocates and the National Wildlife Refuge Association for a variety of resources to help them navigate the sometimes turbulent waters of the nonprofit sea, including advocacy, keeping up with nonprofit regulations and trends, and adjusting to our ever-changing world. We hope you enjoy the articles here giving a closer look at CORFA, which is, relatively speaking, “the new kid on the block.” Like most Friends groups, CORFA is an all-volunteer organization, yet it offers Friends so much. Read on to get a close-up view of CORFA and also learn about the important role that NWRA plays in supporting CORFA and Friends. All this and more in the current issue!

Click To Read About CORFA And More!

Read All Of The Stories!

Sincerely,
Sue Hix, Editor
Friends of Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge


Credits

The fall 2021 version of The Link has been a coordinated effort between the National Wildlife Refuge Association and Coalition of Refuge Friends & Advocates. 

To receive the next issue of The Link, complete the form at the bottom of this page https://www.refugeassociation.org/friends. And please add refugeassociation.org to the safe list for your email account.

You’re invited to join the CORFA Facebook group, a place to connect with other amazing members of the Friends community to share information, insights, and experiences concerning nonprofit governance, management, and advocacy. Go to  https://www.facebook.com/groups/coalitionofrefugefriends/ and request to join this private group.

  • Sue Hix (Editor) – Friends of Sherburne NWR
  • Joan Patterson (Co-editor)—Coalition of Refuge Friends and Advocates 
  • Caroline Brouwer—NWRA VP of Government Affairs 
  • Eden Taylor (designer)— NWRA Communications Associate 
  • Friends Editorial Staff:
    • Cheryl Hart—NWRA Board, Board member of Friends of Tualatin River NWR 
    • Kathy Woodward—Former NWRA Board Member, Board member of Friends of Great Swamp NWR 
    • Jim Stone– NWRA Board, Board member of Friends of the Wichitas

Continue ReadingThe Link — Fall 2021 Newsletter

National Wildlife Refuge Association’s Legislative Chat

  • Post category:Advocacy
  • Reading time:1 mins read
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On September 22nd, Caroline Brouwer, VP of Government Affairs, discussed the major legislation on Capitol Hill, from reconciliation to infrastructure to appropriations, with an explanation of how these bills will impact Refuge Friends and national wildlife refuges. below are links to the recording and slides from the webinar.

Caroline thanks for the updates.

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The Link — Summer 2021 Newsletter

  • Post category:News
  • Reading time:5 mins read

The Link is a quarterly newsletter produced in coordination between the National Wildlife Refuge Association and Coalition of Refuge Friends & Advocates.


As we enter mid-summer, we are so excited to be focusing this edition of The Link on the sustainability of our organizations! At its very heart, sustainability is all about long-term planning—why does your organization exist and how are you going to accomplish your goals? 

The mission of the Refuge Association is to “protect, promote, and enhance America’s wildlife heritage through strategic programs that serve the System and wildlife beyond its boundaries.” In order to be a sustainable organization so that we can achieve that goal, we rely on fundraising from partners, major donors, grants, foundations, and corporate sponsors. This support allows us to hire expert, professional staff who understand the Refuge System, understand Friends groups and their importance to the Refuge System, and care deeply about the success of these programs and the sustainability of wildlife habitat and public lands. 

We hope you enjoy this edition of The Link and that it helps your Friends group as we continue to work together to build up all of our organizations so that we can support, defend, and protect our nation’s National Wildlife Refuge System.

Caroline Brouwer
National Wildlife Refuge Association
cbrouwer@refugeassociation.org


From the Editor

In mid-April on a beautiful spring day, our Friends of Sherburne NWR treasurer of 14 years passed away suddenly while doing volunteer gardening at a local hospice. Carol was both a Friend and friend, so those of us who had worked closely with her felt her loss keenly. To make matters worse, not only did she handle our Friends banking, prepare monthly financial statements, and manage our budget, but she also served as our Friends membership chair, manager of our member/donor database, organizer of our silent auctions, and willing volunteer for all kinds of other small, but essential, duties. Ironically, at a Zoom meeting just a few days before her death, we had joked that, when it came to Friends like Carol, we were truly vulnerable, or “truck-sensitive” as we termed it. That is, we had good-naturedly warned her to beware of any speeding trucks that might come her way. At least we had let her know how much we appreciated her, but that was small consolation when we learned of her passing.

Into the lurch stepped our immediate past president. After all, someone had to process deposits, pay bills, and handle essential correspondence; however, this could be only a temporary fix. We would need to recruit a qualified treasurer, continue work in progress to select and convert to a “constituent relationship management” (CRM) system, separate the membership duties from the financial work and recruit someone to take these on, etc., etc. The good news was that Carol’s work was up to date and her records were organized and complete. Related processes and procedures were documented and had been recently reviewed. It could’ve been worse. Today we can report that we have used our member network to recruit a new, highly qualified treasurer; we are about to commit to a CRM system provider; we have qualified board members who have agreed to convert and help to maintain our database; and we have other essential tasks covered, at least for the immediate future.  

Friends of Sherburne will survive our loss, but it has illustrated how vulnerable all Friends organizations may be, especially those with all-volunteer leadership and administrative management. With that in mind, for this issue we have invited three Friends organizations to tell us what they have done or are doing to attract, train, retain, and sustain effective leadership and otherwise maintain their organizations as challenges inevitably arise. Their hard work and persistence, combined with the support of their USFWS partners, Friends mentors, or consultants, enabled these Friends to survive and thrive. We invite you to read and be inspired by their stories. I think Carol would appreciate our adding this to her legacy. 

Sue Hix
Editor


Read About Sustaining Your Friends Organization And Its Leadership:

Other Features In This Issues:


Read All Of the Stories!


Credits

The Summer 2021 version of The Link has been a coordinated effort between the National Wildlife Refuge Association and Coalition of Refuge Friends & Advocates. 

To receive the next issue of The Link, complete the form at the bottom of this page https://www.refugeassociation.org/friends. And please add refugeassociation.org to the safe list for your email account.

You’re invited to join the CORFA Facebook group, a place to connect with other amazing members of the Friends community to share information, insights, and experiences concerning nonprofit governance, management, and advocacy. Go to  https://www.facebook.com/groups/coalitionofrefugefriends/ and request to join this private group.

  • Sue Hix (Editor) – Friends of Sherburne NWR
  • Joan Patterson (Co-editor)—Coalition of Refuge Friends and Advocates 
  • Caroline Brouwer—NWRA VP of Government Affairs 
  • Eden Taylor (designer)— NWRA Communications Associate 
  • Friends Editorial Staff: Cheryl Hart—NWRA Board, Board member of Friends of Tualatin River NWR 
  • Kathy Woodward—Former NWRA Board Member, Board member of Friends of Great Swamp NWR 
  • Jim Stone– NWRA Board, Board member of Friends of the Wichitas

Continue ReadingThe Link — Summer 2021 Newsletter