BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. — A Brevard County-based nonprofit group dedicated to rescuing wildlife has found itself in need of rescue.
- Wild Florida Rescue forced to close for a month
- Group: "We are a free service, but it's not free to run"
- Nonprofit hoping community comes together with donations
Financial woes have forced Wild Florida Rescue to close up shop for a month.
"We are a free service, but it's not free to run," Heather Pepe of Wild Florida Rescue told Spectrum News 13.
Pepe oversees the nonprofit animal rescue operation with just a handful of volunteers.
Calls about injured or trapped animals come in 24/7 even from places outside Brevard County.
"The calls overlap now, and it's super hard, and each call takes time," she said.
The miles also add up, and with that, expenses such as gas, and wear and tear. Yearly insurance for the group's ambulance runs $3,500.
Wild Florida Rescue responded to 4,507 calls in 2018.
"Four thousand, five hundred, seven of them who may have suffered alone," Pepe said. "That's a lot of wildlife needing help."
Now, the group needs help, as money to operate is drying up.
"None of us are in a financial position to pay for it all," Pepe said.
She hopes that over the next 30 days, the community will come through with donations.
The group is also applying for grants with the goal of getting back on the job soon, making a difference in the lives of animals.
"If we don't do it, we won't be able to continue," Pepe said.
Since Tuesday, Wild Florida Rescue has received more than $1,000 in donations, and locals are offering them fundraising events.
If you would like to help Wild Florida Rescue, there is a donation link on its Facebook page.