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Your Support Makes a Difference.
How does it feel to be the lifeblood of one of the oldest local Audubon chapters in the country? Bedford Audubon is approaching its 110th year, and we hope you feel proud to be a part of us. We are humbled, exhilarated, and full of hope for our ongoing success in protecting the birds and habitat in our community.
We’re also thankful to you for generously supporting our mission! And we’re thankful to over a century’s worth of people who made it their mission to fulfill a vision of protecting wildlife right here in our own backyard. With this milestone approaching, we decided to dig into our roots and invite some of Bedford Audubon’s recent past presidents over to Bylane Farm: John Askildsen, John Hannan, Carol Cioppa, Tony Ianniello, Simon Brocklehurst, and Susan Fisher (current president). Over wine and cheese, we sat down to talk in the 1700’s farmhouse that is our home. What unfolded delighted and surprised us.
The contributions of these individuals were inspiring: establishing our headquarters at Bylane Farm from a gift from Mary Parker, extensively renovating the main house and cottage, securing 600 acres of sanctuaries, entering into extensive easements with the State of New York and local property owners, and growing our staff. All this while executing on our strong educational bird and nature programs.
You can also continue to make a difference! A donation to Bedford Audubon will enable us to keep our programming strong and our sanctuaries alive.
It was also particularly heartening to repeatedly hear the theme of inclusiveness during the evening. Bedford Audubon to its core is welcoming to all. As Carol Cioppa put it, “When you’re out on a bird walk, you don’t ask people what they do!”
But the real delight was how quickly the conversation swiveled from the past to focusing on Bedford Audubon’s future. The energy in the room was palpable and new ideas flew around faster than a kestrel. They included:
- Launching a Bedford Audubon social media app to attract the next generation of birders
- More inclusively reaching out to the communities in our territory
- Holding more events in our sanctuaries for our neighbors and local community
- Creating more programs from our Hawkwatch, Bird Banding and other research initiatives
- Initiating international field trips to benefit in- country communities in need and inspire current members
We can’t tackle everything at once, but the discussion showed plenty of raw energy and thirst for action at Bedford Audubon. Far from our 110th solely being a time to celebrate the past, it’s clear that we have good work ahead! And the tools at our disposal are powerful – our bird and habitat expertise, our research, our properties, and especially the time and energy of our members and volunteers.
But we can’t do it without your financial support. Please make a donation today and become part of Bedford Audubon’s history and future.
Thank you for supporting us in all the ways that you do!
Susan Fisher Bill Cavers
President Executive Director
P.S. Please give a gift today. You can also call us at 914-232-1999 to make your donation.
From left to right, back row: John Askildsen, Simon Brocklehurst; front row: Carol Cioppa, John Hannan, Tony Ianniello, Susan Fisher