The Manitoba Wildlife Federation (MWF) is looking forward to welcoming back their members and community stakeholders to their annual fundraising banquet, Wild at Heart, at the end of October.
"It's our primary fundraiser for the Manitoba Wildlife Federation," shares Program and Events Coordinator, Chris Benson. "Unfortunately, because of Covid over the last 2 years it was postponed. So, we're looking forward to seeing all our friends that we haven't seen for the last couple of years. I think it's going to be a really great event!"
As a not-for-profit organization, the MWF practiced good stewardship in budgeting their day-to-day operations through the leaner COVID years.
"We were just very careful on how we spent our money and went out delivering programs, of course with restrictions in place," he explains. "We actually turned to a lot of online programming through zoom. We had presenters come in and talk on informational topics that relate to the outdoors like hunting and fishing and environmental, those types of things. Those were very popular, so as time goes on, we'll be doing a little of both; in-person programs and maybe during the colder months when appropriate, we're going to be doing some online programming too."
Benson says the annual gala is very popular with its membership from across the province, reaching numbers of approximately 500 attendees each year for the dinner. He adds they're hoping to exceed that 500 mark this year.
"People haven't been able to go to the dinner for a couple of years so hopefully they've tucked away a little bit of money and are able to come out and support the Federation at the dinner. We've got some amazing prizes that supporters and sponsors have donated so there should be some really exciting items up for bid and through the raffles," he adds.
Funds raised will go towards general operation of the MWF, as well as facilitating the many programs they offer throughout the year.
"We do a lot of ‘learn to fish' and ‘learn to hunt and shoot' programs. So, all the fundraising helps to offset the costs to the participants for those programs so that they're affordable, and so the cost isn't a barrier for someone who wants to go out and try hunting or fishing or shooting for the first time."
For ticket information visit the Manitoba Wildlife Federation website. Tickets can also be purchased by calling the MWF office in Winnipeg.