A family matter.

Family. Food. Warmth. Safety. Home.These are the things I’m thinking about in the intensifying few days leading up to the holidays.It always makes me think about our families of wildlife, out there in the elements, finding their way. I’m in awe of their resilience, their own unique family and social structures, and how they have adapted over millennia.  I wonder how they do it.But I also know that many of these families are struggling against terrible odds right now.As I compose this note to you, and I’m doing it from the comfort of my home.I know that at any time, I can go to my kitchen and there will be food and water.I know this old, log home – while aching in spots – is solid and true and provides me sanctuary and protection.I know that I can walk down my country road and I will not be cut down by an ocean liner.I know that I will not have to suddenly alter a thousand-year migratory route because I cannot find enough food in the place I have always found food.I know I can keep young ones safe.I know my home and our property and my sources of food will not be bulldozed by the world’s heaviest equipment used to clear land for development or oil extraction.I will not hear seismic, deafening blasts that will disorient me and make me unable to find or communicate with my kin.That’s what we do here at Sierra. We’re working to make sure life-threatening obstacles and dangers don’t impact the lives of so many of our wildlife families.It’s what we did last week when we appeared in court to defend endangered blue whales, right whales and all of the species who need the Gulf of St. Lawrence to live and breathe and raise their young, including the good people of the 5 surrounding provinces.And it’s what we will continue to do, all across Canada.We step up and we fight.Our small staff team and hundreds of our volunteers across the country put in very long days, at this time of year especially. But it’s worth it.We are our own family, too, here at Sierra – we are linked by common values, traditions, expectations, and shared goals and passion.You, too, are a part of this family. There’s not a day that we don’t think about your contributions, and all that you do to make a real difference for our planet – every letter you sign, every call to action you answer, every donation, your uplifting notes of support that keep us moving forward, especially when we are navigating a particularly tough campaign such as taking on very wealthy and powerful corporations or government bodies.The end of the year sees us prepping for the next – campaign planning, addressing urgent matters such as this month’s legal challenge, NAFTA cases, and raising the funds necessary to carry us into the new year healthy and strong, just to name a few.Whether it’s protecting aquatic and terrestrial wildlife in Alberta who require specific rivers and lakes to live, defendng migratory bird habitat in Montreal, supporting the protection of multiple species families who rely on the health of the Great Lakes ecosystems, preventing road injuries and mortalities of both people and wildlife with our Watch for Wildlife program, or defending the marine habitat of whales who need our Canadian waters to migrate, feed and keep their family groups healthy – we’re here to make sure their families are ok.You can make a huge difference by making a special holiday gift, so that we know what we can take on in 2018 to protect these special family groups.We’re counting on you, because you have always been there for us. Just like family.Warmest wishes for a safe and happy holiday,Melissa MunroDirector of Development and Communications