Every year, I donate to non-profits I love during the giving season. It’s one of my rituals for the months of November and December. Every year, I switch them up, and spread the love around. Except, every year, I find myself giving to Rocky Mountain Wild – both monthly and on Colorado Gives Day.
Yes, nowadays that’s job security. But, I started giving to RMW two years before I worked here, when I still lived in Wisconsin and only saw the mountains of Colorado once a year on vacation.
I knew even then, RMW staff is a small bundle of brilliant social misfits, working like hell to protect the wild places that we love for the wildlife that live there. We are few in number, but we’re strong in spirit and we work tirelessly to get the job done. We are never alone in this. There are hundreds of tenacious people who not only support our work but bring their energy and expertise to the table – exponentially increasing what we can do with our small staff.
RMW has provided me with opportunities I couldn’t have fathomed when I made my first donation back in 2013. In this past year, I joined the 100 Women for the Wild and attended the parties, trainings, and trips associated with it. I felt empowered in the woman-only space, met like-minded women, learned new skill sets, and saw new things – including a juvenile American pika, up close! This computer-obsessed, non-outdoorsy, sports-intimidated person spent a day hiking with members of the 100 Women for the Wild through Brainard Lake, finding and learning about pika. If you had told me in 2013 that I would have been doing that today, I wouldn’t have believed you.
In a year that could have been defeating due to the political and social climate’s toxicity, I was inspired by our film festivals, thrilled with our court and wildlife wins, empowered by the 100 Women for the Wild, encouraged by our inaugural Colorado Endangered Species Week, and elated by how many people cared and joined in our advocacy projects to make a big difference to the small creatures under our care.
RMW, the staff and board behind it, the volunteers and citizen scientists that support it, and the donors and sponsors that fuel it restores me. And the environment that we all passionately work for fulfills me. That’s why I give to RMW every giving season.
Consider joining Chris in supporting RMW: