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Local wildlife center faces challenges due to inflation and high gas prices

TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) – Inflation is impacting the work of a local wildlife rescue organization on many levels.

Nature’s Nursery relies on donations of time, money and supplies to help care for thousands of injured and orphaned wildlife each year.

High gas prices and inflation are straining operations at this time. Executive director Allison Schroeder said spending was at an all-time high.

“All of our overhead is up,” Schroeder said.

At the same time, Schroeder says 2022 is on track to be one of the records. “We are at over 2,200 animals right now. Our busiest year for admissions was 2020. We are fifty above where we were at this point that year.

Taking care of all these animals takes a lot of people and many of them are volunteers. Volunteer Coordinator Rita Chovan said volunteers are an essential part of day-to-day operations.

“Volunteers are everything. We couldn’t do everything we do without them.

But many volunteers have been affected by high gas prices. Some are not able to help transport the animals. Chovan said others have had to reduce the number of days they help at the center.

“People can’t be here as much as they want when gas is $5 a gallon. Many of our volunteers travel long distances to help, and some of them just aren’t able to do that right now,” Chovan said.

The price of products also eats into the budget. Schroeder said people donated produce from their gardens. “We also did some of our own gardening. Volunteers have grown things here on site. It’s just a small impact, but we’re doing everything we can.

Schroeder said donations of things like paper towels and cat food are also essential. “Being able to donate these things is huge. It’s less than we have to pay out of pocket.

Nature’s Nursery is moving to a new building in Waterville, and Schroeder said the project will likely cost more as well. “Contractors say material costs are higher than expected. So there will be fluctuations with the cost of this project as well.

Even with all the challenges, Chovan said the animals will still get the help they need. “Animals will never suffer. They will always come first. We will stay late and arrive early. We are here on vacation. It’s a seven-day-a-week job. We have so many dedicated volunteers that we’re very grateful for. “

There are many ways to help Nature’s Nursery fill in the gaps. In addition to supplies and money, they are asking for gas card donations to be given to people who volunteer their time to transport injured and orphaned animals. Click here to find out more.

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