The Red Deer River Naturalists received a bequest for $500,000, used to start an endowment fund with the Red Deer and District Community Foundation. The invested money will be used to finance future conservation projects. (Contributed photo).

The Red Deer River Naturalists received a bequest for $500,000, used to start an endowment fund with the Red Deer and District Community Foundation. The invested money will be used to finance future conservation projects. (Contributed photo).

Future conservation projects funded through large endowment entrusted to the RDRN

A $500,000 endowment fund for conservation projects has been established by the Red Deer River Naturalists.

The generous bequest used to start the Endowment Fund for Nature by the RDRN, in partnership with the Red Deer and District Community Foundation, has also ignited a lot of discussion about what the Naturalists want to accomplish in the years to come.

The large donation should not only ensure the long-term sustainability of the RDRN organization but also enable the group to engage in important environmental projects throughout Central Alberta, said Rick Tallas, RDRN’s interim president.

He added the funds invested with the Red Deer and District Community Foundation will ensure many conservation goals are met, since protecting the environment for future generations is the goal.

Creative and timely investments are now being considered. The organization has already created an assessment process for potential projects and funding opportunities will be announced as they are developed.

Meanwhile, the RDRN needs volunteers for committees and representatives for the board as input and expertise are needed for steering the organization into the future.

“The future for RDRN is wide open with conservation and nature-based opportunities,” said Tallas. The board invites anyone interested to get involved. For more information, please contact Tallas at 403-341-4911, or email ricktallas@gmail.com.

Red Deer River Naturalists are one of the oldest environmental groups in Alberta, having formed in 1898 (beginning as the Northwest Entomological Society). The RDRN has been involved in the protection of the Gaetz Lake Bird Sanctuary, and Waskasoo Park, as well as the construction and renovation of its sister organization, Kerry Wood Nature Centre.

The RDRN has also provided funds and expertise to support projects at Medicine River Wildlife Centre, Ellis Bird Farm, and Nature Alberta.

Environment