message from ifaw
message from ifaw
Our world today has witnessed a sense of upheaval, both socio-political and environmental, that has left an indelible mark on our times. Our minds are conditioned to accept that traumatic events will result in human harm, or at the very least, a fundamental disruption of day-to-day life. We are not, however, accustomed to thinking about the suffering these events cause to animals and the overwhelming effects on the natural environment and on biodiversity.
The act of alleviating suffering is an act of mercy. It is not a strategy or a scientific endeavour. It’s not economic or measurable. An act of mercy is a fundamental reflection of the essence of compassion and has value in and of itself.
At IFAW we recognise the inherent dignity that all living beings so fully deserve, and we act from a sincere willingness to share the earth.
IFAW receives many requests from the general public to intervene to help animals in need. Often these requests entail helping alleviate the suffering of one or perhaps a very small handful of animals; individuals that would, biologically speaking, often be disregarded. Regardless of ecological impact, physical proximity or strategic importance, there is an underlying faith that IFAW will alleviate the suffering of those animals through rescue, rehabilitation, and in the ideal scenario, releasing that animal back into its natural environment.
In reality, this ideal cannot always be achieved, and we must face the most difficult of decisions when we embark on that journey of empathy. We will not be able to save every animal that is being abused, neglected or is starving. But we accept the responsibility to lighten the load of all suffering animals. We focus on the impact that we have—in everything that we do and at all scales— from the ‘micro’ where we help one individual animal to the ‘macro’ where we work to ensure the needs of an entire species population for generations to come.
In the framework of animal welfare and conservation, the individual is the first critical component. Therefore, at IFAW, we place such inherent value on the individual—for each one constitutes a fundamental piece of the global puzzle. And thus, when we save one individual, we are taking the first step in ultimately saving the entire species.
We strengthen our impact by uniting two primary pillars: rescue and conservation. It begins with rescuing the individual animal. It then progresses to helping that animal thrive in captivity so that they can ultimately thrive in the wild. And it concludes with providing the individual with a safe environment to inhabit once they are released back to the wild. That is the ultimate goal.
Our work does not focus on the enrichment of our own projects alone. To do so would negate the global nature of the challenges wildlife and the human species face today. We see tremendous and often untapped potential in ‘unusual suspects’—unlikely heroes and ‘surprising partners’ that emerge, bridging the divide between people and communities. From the landowners in New South Wales, Australia who see themselves as caretakers of their local areas, entrusted with helping local species thrive; to the Global Shapers Community of Harare, Zimbabwe, a group of tech-savvy, young professionals who share the goal of bettering their communities, addressing local, regional, as well as global challenges of the day.
Taken together, these unusual suspects provide the inspiration and greatest collective momentum for conservation of the world’s species. One habitat at a time, one community at a time.
People have faith in IFAW as an organisation and in us as individuals, for we share a collective philosophy of compassion. Alleviating animals’ suffering is paramount. It’s a shared journey between mutual living beings. We do it because it lies at the fundamental core of who we are as an organisation.
In the simple act of compassion, we truly realise that IFAW’s mission has so genuinely been fulfilled and that together we can protect the sanctuary of our shared earth.
IFAW Executive Management Team
IFAW Board of Directors
Stay in the know. Be ready to act.You’ll receive news, updates on activities and on future giving opportunities. You can unsubscribe at any time.