How to Help Endangered Species and Wildlife in Seven Ways
Preservation of the environment has been a trending topic in recent years as part of the discussion surrounding climate change. When habitats and ecosystems suffer, so do the animals that live in them. And many iconic animals in Canada are endangered or at risk, like polar bears, caribous, sea otters, beluga whales, and hundreds of others. From fundraising for animal charities to raising awareness about how to prevent animal extinction, we can all do our part to help animals and save wildlife. Learn how to help endangered species below.
Five startling endangered animal facts
An animal is endangered when the wild population has dropped so low that the species is at risk of extinction. Here are some quick facts about endangered animals you should know:
- The Species at Risk Act is a law whose goal is to protect endangered or threatened organisms and their habitats.
- According to the International Union for Conservation of Nature, globally there are 7,510 endangered or critically endangered animal species as of March 2019. In Canada alone, there are over 250 endangered species.
- Removing an animal from the endangered species list is possible, though it takes many years. For example, the bald eagle was removed from the endangered species list in 2007, after more than 40 years of conservation efforts.
- Freshwater ecosystems support over 100,000 species, yet are among the world’s most endangered habitats.
- As a result of climate change, between 30-50% of all species could face extinction by 2050.
Seven easy ways you can help save wildlife
There are countless things we can each do to help protect the environment and the animals we share it with. From endangered species to rescue animals, there are many ways to help animals in need. If you’d like to make an impact at home and abroad, take a look at some fun ways you can help save wildlife and protect endangered species.
1. Plant native wildlife to attract pollinators
While the federal government has made strides in protecting honeybees, their counterpart is threatened. Wild bees, responsible for one in three bites of food, are listed under Canada’s species risk registry. Yet bees aren’t the only pollinators at risk—many types of hummingbirds make the endangered species list as well.
You can start a fundraiser to gather donations for purchasing native plant species, and can make a day of planting wildlife with your friends or family. This is both a good bonding activity and can go a long way toward restoring the environments where pollinators thrive.
2. Start a recycling initiative
About 91% of all plastic products are not recycled. This contributes to the nearly 5.25 trillion pieces of trash that are currently polluting the Earth’s oceans, harming the wildlife that calls the ocean home. Volunteer with recycling programs in your area, or start one of your own.
3. Host a community fundraising event
Get your local community involved by hosting a fundraising event. Charge a small entry fee and decide on prizes. Make a donation using the proceeds to a charity that helps protect endangered species, and let participants know. Some great fundraising event ideas include hosting a party or banquet, a car wash (or dog wash), or a charity sports event.
4. Create a fundraiser to support wildlife programs
Crowdfunding can be one of the simplest and most effective ways to help protect endangered species. First, choose an organization with active programs that help protect wildlife. Start by sharing your fundraiser with family and friends, and encourage those in your network to share on social media. Make it clear in your fundraiser which nonprofit will receive the donation, and how the organization will use those funds to help save wildlife. Some fun ideas for a nonprofit fundraiser include hosting a charity sale, partnering with a local radio station to raise awareness, or organizing a benefit dinner.
5. Sponsor an endangered animal
Another great way to help prevent animal extinction and save wildlife is to sponsor an endangered animal. Both the WWF Canada and the Canadian Wildlife Federation offer easy virtual adoption packages that benefit endangered species. Share your adoption on social media to encourage those in your network to sponsor an animal, too.
6. Clean up your local parks
Start an initiative to clean up your local parks and other outdoor spaces you enjoy, such as wetlands, beaches, forests, or rivers. Additionally, starting a fundraiser to support outdoor clean-up means you can raise money for things like dog waste stations at trailheads, or trash and recycling bins at popular parks.
7. Educate others about eco-friendly products
Many household cleaning products pose a threat to the environment. Whether that’s due to evaporation of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere, or toxic runoff into aquatic environments, the products we use make an impact. Offer to speak at community centers or colleges about eco-friendly products, or start a fundraiser to purchase eco-friendly cleaning supplies to donate to local schools or animal shelters.
See how others are fundraising for endangered species
Take a look below at some examples of animal fundraisers highlighting how to help protect endangered species. The successful fundraisers below used GoFundMe, the #1 and most trusted leader in free online fundraising. Plus, GoFundMe’s 0% platform fee for organizers means you get to donate more of the money you raise.
On Ontario club raised over $7,000 to support the local deer population who could not source food from the extreme temperatures in winter.
Kate raised almost double her $1,300 donation goal for Wildlife ACT, a South Africa-based organization dedicated to poaching prevention and animal conservation. Thanks to generous donors, Kate was able to spend two weeks assisting rangers with tracking and monitoring animals, and providing veterinary support.
Start protecting endangered species today
We all want to do our part to help preserve the planet, and protecting endangered species is one important way to do that. Crowdfunding can be an easy, safe, and effective way to raise money for your favourite charity or organization. Now that you know how to help endangered species, start a wildlife fundraiser today and see what kind of impact you can make.