Make your vote for nature count for generations to come.
Karen Baird is the seabird advocate for Forest & Bird and the daughter of John ‘Birdman’ Kendrick whose legacy to New Zealand was an inspiring collection of native birdsong. Here, Karen writes why gifts in wills are so important.
If you are a supporter of Forest & Bird, I hope someone’s told you lately that you are amazing. Because you are.
With your help (and from people all over New Zealand, our beautiful Aotearoa) we’ve achieved so much. Thank you for all that you do for us.
I wonder what our founder, Captain Val Sanderson, would think about Forest & Bird today. I wonder what he’d have to say about what we’ve achieved together. He returned home in 1921 after serving our country overseas. Sadly, he found not a lot being done to defend nature. Val campaigned to see Kapiti Island, overrun with livestock and in a state of disrepair, restored to its former glory and become our first wildlife reserve. Val found he wasn’t alone. With the help of others, he fought hard to save nature – those with no voice. Together, they won!
Val started a movement that continues on in you and me today.
It’s great knowing we can count on you to help defend nature. Did you know that Forest & Bird receives no government funding? This means we can act independently, making sure that defending New Zealand nature is the only item on our agenda. Our wins over the years, have come through everyday people like you and I putting in the hard yards.
Your vote for nature means we can continue to work with our new government – keeping our leaders and decision makers accountable – tackling the big issues facing us today like having access to freshwater, just like our parents and grandparents once had. Your confidence in us means we can to speak up for our precious marine environments, and defend the best interests of nature and all Kiwis when it comes to the exploitation of our pristine wilderness. Your trust in us, means we can fight for the survival of our unique species and habitats, not just for our generation but for generations to come. Doing nothing has never been an option for us. Too much is at stake.
What do you hope your legacy will be when it comes to defending nature? Not only in your lifetime, but in the lifetimes of those when you’re gone?
I am grateful that my father, John ‘Birdman’ Kendrick, installed in me a love for New Zealand and for nature. He was an audio-visual soundman for the Wildlife Service, and I am immensely proud that, like Captain Sanderson, he was somewhat of a pioneer. He brought native birdsong into the homes of New Zealanders over the radio airwaves for many years.
He gave to me a thirst for adventure and a love of nature. After leaving school, I studied zoology – from there, there was no turning back! This year, as I celebrate 25 years as a conservationist, I like to think that at least a bit of my dad lives on in me.
What do you want your loved ones to remember and their loved ones to know about you? What do you hope your story will be? What will you leave behind that you hope others will follow?
With Forest & Bird you can protect the future interests of nature and your loved ones by leaving a gift in your will.
Your special gift, when combined with those of others, is something that we can use to further our work for many years to come. Not only will your gift help Forest & Bird plan with certainty for future need, you also have peace of mind knowing it will benefit future generations who value what we have and who call New Zealand home.
Ultimately your kindness will help ensure the wellbeing and survival of the wonderful creatures you and I currently know and love – those who have no voice. How good is that?
I want future generations of Kiwis to know what a Kiwi is. I have no doubt this is what you want too.
I understand that asking you to leave a bequest is a big ask from us. It’s not something we ask of new supporters, and certainly not something we ask every day. All I ask is that you give it some thought and consideration.
Perhaps you have already left a gift in your will to Forest & Bird. If you have, thank you! Jess would like to touch base with you and support you by finding the best project for your kind donation.
Whatever you decide, thank you for taking the time to read this and thank you for the amazing and important role you already play in defending nature. It’s great knowing we can count on you and please know you’re very much appreciated.