The Dudley T. Dougherty Foundation

Environmental Stewardship at the Sawgrass Nature Center

Grant Information
Categories Education , Community , Environment
Location United States
Cycle Year 2020
Organization Information
Organization Name (provided by applicant) Coral Springs Nature Center and Wildlife Hospital DBA: Sawgrass Nature Center
Organization Name (provided by automatic EIN validation)
Contact Information
Contact Name Robin Reccasina
Phone 9547529453
3000 Sportsplex Drive
Coral Springs
Additional Information
Used for The needs of the organization are the operation of a nonprofit nature center comprised of a wildlife hospital, administrative building with offices and exhibit animals, an outdoor classroom, and 4.5 acres of property that includes an outside animal exhibit area. We treat and rehabilitate injured wildlife and release them back to nature. We also promote environmental stewardship in our community.
Benefits The money will go towards improving the treatment of wildlife in South Florida as well as increase the public's knowledge about their environment and how to best be a steward for the natural world around them.
Proposal Description Wildlife is brought to us from all over South Florida. Our education programs serve students throughout the area as well. The exhibit area contains animals that cannot be released safely due to permanent injuries or non-native status. People visit from communities around Florida and we also have tourists from different parts of the US and abroad.

The program has been in existence for over 14 years at the current location and a previous 11 years before we had a permanent location. We currently rehabilitate almost 900 animals per year, representing over 75 species with each one requiring a specific rehabilitation protocol. The education program serves over 7000 students per year through field trips, day camps, birthday parties, scout programs, and outreach events. Volunteers donate over 15,000 hours per year to further our mission.

The Coral Springs Nature Center & Wildlife Hospital; DBA Sawgrass Nature Center and Wildlife Hospital (SNC) is a vital organization serving several communities adjacent to our facility in the Coral Springs/Sawgrass Expressway area.

We are a volunteer-driven, charitable, non-profit organization, founded in 1995 by a dedicated group of volunteers committed to helping wildlife.

Our mission is twofold:

*To rehabilitate injured, sick, and orphaned wild, native animals and return them to their natural habitat. We also maintain an exhibit area for animals that cannot be released due to their injuries or non-native status.

*To provide environmental education to students and adults in Broward, Palm Beach, and Miami-Dade Counties both as outreach programs and in-house field trips for schools, scouts, civic groups, and special needs organizations.

We want to foster awareness and appreciation of wildlife, particularly “urban” wildlife, found here in south Florida. Each year, people bring approximately 900 animals into our wildlife hospital and we provide educational presentations to approximately 7,000 participants. Volunteers donate roughly 14000 hours of their time to help us meet our goals, annually.

Over the past 25 years, we have worked steadily toward our mission by not only treating in-need animals, but also by educating the public about the natural world, being a responsible pet owner, and what to do when you find a wild animal. We offer environmental camps for children, as well as on-site and off-site programming. We are also an information resource for people who find injured or lost wild animals, or have any questions regarding wildlife. We educate people about their local natural environment as well as how to best handle a wild animal situation.

Our programs and services are very much in demand, but as a small, non-profit organization our budget is greatly strained. We rely heavily on corporate, individual and foundation donations to provide our much-needed programs and services to the Community. Listed below are the statistics of the population we serve.

The following numbers are based on 2019 records (some may not be Coral Springs Residents):
● Membership: 117; (50 are Coral Springs residents)
● Active Volunteers: 459
● Injured Animals: 850+
● Educational Programs – approx.3000
● Outreach Presentations – approx. 4000
● Visitors – greater than 5000

We also serve a diverse population. Ethnicity served approximately breaks down as follows: (based on 2014 - 18 5-Year American Community Survey)
● 43% Non-Hispanic White
● 28% Hispanic or Latino
● 21% Non-Hispanic Black
● 9 % Non-Hispanic Other

Age Group: 18-34: 21% 35-49: 22.2% 50-64: 20.1% 65+: 10.9%