Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Hoots, Howls, and Hollers 12/14/2010

Here’s a bit of good news…in fact it’s a lot of cool news. Our Education volunteer, Craig Fischer has recently been selected to receive the Paul L. Singer Award from Banner Health. Each year Banner Health honors employees who make an extraordinary contribution to the community by volunteering. Dr. Paul L. Singer was a chief-of-staff at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center, an Arizona State Senator, and a member of the Board of Regents. The award recognizes and applauds his longtime commitment to the community.

And, what could be a better way to honor his service than picking someone like Craig Fischer to carry the award away this year? Craig and three others were selected for the coveted award. Craig’s own words best describe to you one of the amazing successes he has experienced with his educational endeavors as a Liberty Wildlife educator. Says Craig,

“I was speaking at an event and a young girl came out or the audience and started asking us all sorts of questions about the birds—and kept on asking. Then I noticed there was this woman crying so I excused myself and asked her if there was anything I could do. She said, ‘No, but I’ve never seen anything like this before! My daughter is severely autistic and she never speaks in public.’ That’s when I realized that the bird was her bridge in making a connection from her world to a greater world. The girl is now finishing up her schooling, planning to attend a community college to be out there with people. She wants to become a veterinarian. It was absolutely astounding. She went from being closed-in to being a vibrant person all because the bird was that bridge to a wider world for her.

Wow! What a wonderful story told by a wonderful volunteer. Not only does Craig carry off this honor but Banner has donated to Liberty Wildlife and to Craig to help us continue our impactful work. This is meaningful on so many levels. A huge entity like Banner not only encourages and honors its employees to give back to the community, but it also rewards and recognizes achievement with a monetary extra.

I applaud Craig and his generous donation of time and money to Liberty Wildlife and the animal community that we care for, but also for his generosity of spirit to the community of people with whom we are intricately entwined.

Thanks Craig, for all that you do.

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