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2018 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Voices for Biodiversity

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animals, Anthropology & Sociology, Arts & Culture, Fisheries Resources, Printing & Publishing

Mission: VoicesforBiodiversity enhances biodiversity conservation through storytelling, collaboration, community and advocacy. We focus on sharing the stories of those who would not otherwise have a way of being heard. Then we help those same individuals create or improve local environmental projects that help protect biodiversity or we help them enact advocacy to protect nature where they live.

Results: We believe that when people share their stories about nature and other species we learn to live in healthy relationship with the natural world and protect biodiversity. Voices for Biodiversity (V4B) has shared feature articles, interviews, reviews, dispatches, articles by youth, photos, videos, and more from people all around the globe who care about other species. We have published hundreds of articles in the past decade. We also produce content for National Geographic News Watch. Voices for Biodiversity has received numerous awards, including the prestigious Anthropology in Media Award from the American Anthropological Association in 2014; top honors from New Mexico Press Women for Best Nonprofit Website in 2018, 2016 and 2015; and first place for Best Website Edited or Managed by a Nonprofit, Government Agency or Educational Organization from the National Federation of Press Women in 2015 and honorable mention in 2016 and 2018.

Target demographics: Protect biodiversity and increase cultural diversity in the environmental movement.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Storytellers share their stories and enact local conservation advocacy and programs.

Geographic areas served: Global

Programs: Storytellers in Action through which Voices for Biodiversity enhances biodiversity conservation through storytelling, collaboration, community and advocacy.

Community Stories

76 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Have been volunteering at Voices for Biodiversity over 3-years now. Supporting the web site and article publication. I see a constant flow of stories outlining the issues surrounding the co-existence of humans, animals, and the environment. The articles are written by people in the field with an deep understanding of the situations, and include beautiful photography of animals and nature from around the world. This site allows readers to become aware of the challenges placed on nature all around the world as well as the success stories.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

This site shares fascinating stories of how nature and the environment can co-exist and thrive. The site has beautiful images of animals and people interacting with nature around the world, and the stories are written by people with extended experience in these habitats.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity gives diverse people the world over the opportunity to be published. Many people are speaking out for their local nature and wildlife, but because of their lack of education or access, their stories are never told. Voices for Biodiversity is building a virtual community of storytellers to be sure that when someone speaks out for biodiversity, they are published and heard. They are doing great work.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Thank you to Voices for Biodiversity for their efforts in the field of conservation. Sharing stories is so important and on more than one occasion, they have shared my work. It is wonderful to know that there is a platform out there where people can share their work and find what they are looking for in terms of conservation stories, both visual and written. Together, we can do this!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity has been such a champion in raising the voices of storytellers who would otherwise not have the opportunity to share their knowledge of biodiversity, and what a loss that would be! As we watch our environment denigrate, the feeling of doom and loneliness in our plight can be overwhelming, but having a platform that will publish experiences, perspectives and knowledge on biodiversity across the globe has allowed many to be part of a community that raises awareness on the importance of our relationship to our environment and our roles as stewards.

As Co-Director, I am honored to be part of this initiative and team of incredibly dedicated volunteers.

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

In the many years I have been in this field, I have always looked for an organization that shared the voices of conservation that were not by academics for academics only. I was excited to see voices for biodiversity that did just that and more. This organization is genuine, and has so much vision and integrity.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have the utmost respect for this organization and its dedication in bringing forth real stories about the natural world from such a diversity of lenses. I have watched the care and support the staff give this initiative in creating a platform for a community that values all of the other beings who share this planet with us.

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As the director of the Taos Environmental Film Festival I appreciate Voices for Biodiversity's role as an essential voice during these existential times of climate change and human caused destruction of biodiversity on our planet. Their goal is beautifully stated on their website, "our vision is a world where humanity and nature coexist in healthy ecological balance."

Voices for Biodiversity has an award winning website which features important articles on diverse topics such as: first person essays about nature; interviews with interesting people and reviews of relevant books, video, audio and more; feature articles that focus on particular people, species ecologies, places and events; youth writing with photos, video , art work; plus timely new items.

If that weren't enough to inspire action and contemplation, Voices for Biodiversity has an excellent blog for National Geographic which includes many diverse articles such as these featured in 2017 and 2018: Every Extinction: Akagera Park; A Safe Home for Africa's Big Five; "My Life for the Land" Kiliii Yuyan's Powerful Article on Indigenous Conservation Efforts; An Instagram Campaign Raising Awareness on Species Extinction; The Report Is In: 30 Percent of Shops in Nine Countries Include Endangered Turtleshell Gifts.

I appreciate all of the research and contributions Voices for Biodiversity has made over the years which has helped us all live in a better and more sustainable world.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I have been a volunteer for Voices for Biodiversity since 2009. The organization is amazing. It operates almost entirely with a volunteer staff that occasionally receives a stipend if there is money. Despite these financial hardships, the online magazine is not only winning awards, it is changing the lives of people around the globe every day. The e-zine publishes the stories of people who otherwise would not be heard. Their stories are mostly about their experiences with nature and other species. And once these writers, photographers and videographers, who live from Manhattan to Maasai Mara, are heard, they move their storytelling into action. This simple process of giving people a place to connect and be heard is bringing more women, people of color, and indigenous people into the conservation movement, particularly community conservation efforts to protect biodiversity and stop the sixth extinction of species. Thank you, Voices for Biodiversity, for the work your doing.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with V4B and helping out in my own small way to make our mission a reality has been a wonderful experience. Everything we do is done with care, pride and thoughtfulness. Bringing important environmental stories to a wider audience is a challenge we happily dive into, and we're working hard to share diverse perspectives on biodiversity and the natural word at a crucial time in the world's history. Here's to many more years of success for V4B!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The community of people behind Voices for Biodiversity is enthusiastic, supportive, diverse, and passionate. The range of stories and charities the website covers is astounding, and through their work they communicate vital issues and worthy causes to people all around the world. The work they do is commendable and done with diligence and care. I am extremely happy to be a part of the organisation.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering for Biodiversity has widened my perspective. I have been asked to cover articles featuring several organizations working on a specific issue. Aware of the need to take immediate action, they have launched programs with the intent of changing familiar habits. All too frequently, humans find comfort in familiar surroundings, and are afraid of change. However, the global reality is that we can no longer afford such complacency. Climate change and the disappearance of numerous plants and species suggest that we need to start paying attention now. Ignoring the evidence could ultimately lead to our own self destruction. The articles shared by Biodiversity provide not only new ideas, but feature individuals who have come together to make a difference. They generate compassion while encouraging people to take action.

Diane W.2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity is an important website linking people all over the world to the important issues of biodiversity. So many people want to be heard and want to share what they feel are important issues in their lives regarding animals, earth, and the climate. It's a nice place to relax and read, to enjoy other cultures, and connect with those who have the same heart—people who really care.

kirali

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Biodiversity loss has the potential to have dire impacts on humanity. Whats more, humans are slowly becoming the species responsible for the extinction of tens of thousands of species. Voices for Biodiversity is helping spread awareness about biodiversity loss and also is sharing stories of experiences that help to highlight the immense and intrinsic value of biodiversity.

As a director of Voices for Biodiversity I have worked hard on being inclusive of all voices that wish to speak out for biodiversity, regardless of their language or writing abilities.

Being a small, currently all volunteer organization, I am so grateful for our amazing team who donate their time to making the organization a success.

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

My name is Kira and I am the Project Manager for Voices for Bioidversity. I am always impressed by the amount of dedication the board of Voices for Biodiversity puts into creating innovative and important projects. The staff members are always friendly and helpful and their project websites have incredible content.

I am especially thankful to the Founder Tara, who is truly innovative in her ways of thinking about changing perceptions and protecting the environment for future generations.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity fills an important niche in providing first-person stories from the front lines of biodiversity loss worldwide, as well as innovative grassroots solutions, by both indigenous writers and other concerned citizens of the world community. As a writer who has written for many international publications including National Geographic, I am as proud of my volunteer journalism for the award-winning Voices for Biodiversity as I am of any of my other publications. I also support the organization as a donor, and hope other will offer their generous support so this important work can continue. Knowledge provides the power to mitigate and reverse biodiversity loss.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

V4B fills a critical role in conservation journalism, bringing a voice that's balanced and investigates all sides of a story without making overstated and politicized claims. V4B provides thoughtful, insightful, careful reporting that examines how we are connected to the natural world and how we influence it for better or worse. I really appreciate their approach--we need more nonprofits like them!

Advisor

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity brings me stories from voices that aren't often heard, like high school students and practitioners on the ground. In addition, V4B publishes inspiring stories of conservation success, like bringing the Island Fox back from extinction or establishing protected areas in Peru. In today's news environment, these perspectives are invaluable when promoting the protection of biodiversity!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with Voices for Biodiversity has been a great experience. The organization takes an active role in environmental awareness. It constantly brings awareness to important ecological issues that's done through high quality articles, galleries and videos and shared through social media. It also provides a great space for people to come together and share their ideas and discuss ways we can be more active in the protection of the environment.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a lover of nature, it has been an honor to work with Voices for Biodiversity. They bring the unheard stories from around the world that aim to not only raise awareness, but to empower individuals from all walks of life to take action on protecting our environment. It’s great to see an organization that shares my values, and that works on creating a greater connection between humans and the planet.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It matters that we share our stories that connect us to the natural world. I've always loved V4B for that. So much so that I produced a short video for them, about Biodiversity Loss, so we could get the word out faster. V4B matters because these people care and are trying to help make other people care too. You can watch it here - https://vimeo.com/141280881

Karen145

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity brings us stories that we never hear in mainstream media about nature and people who are working to conserve it. Their articles are not only informative, they are interesting, inspiring, and give us hope in the knowledge that some amazing people are working to conserve the world's biodiversity. And hopefully they move many of us to action.

Advisor

Rating: 5

Voices for Biodiversity is playing an extremely important role in the environmental movement. They are one of the few organizations making the point that the loss of biodiversity is as important to the sustainability of the planet, and, ultimately, the survival of the human species, as climate change. The articles and photo galleries are high quality, informative, and insightful. And their advisory board has some of the top names in the field.

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Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

It is an organization based on a unique vision for protecting the planet's ecosystem. The talents and enthusiasm of the people involved with running the project give it a dynamism that is impressive. And the range of people excited by the concept, as evidenced by the followers on Facebook and the Izilwane website, is encouraging at such an early stage in the organization's development. This is an important idea backed by innovative ideas and innovative thinkers.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I love the way that Voices for Biodiversity shares a range of stories related to conservation from a variety of perspectives. I've learned so much from volunteering with this organization, and I really enjoy learning about conservation issues on many different levels. As someone who works both in communications and environmental science, I really appreciate the way the organization shares the stories of the species and ecosystems I value so much.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Working with this nonprofit is inspiring and uplifting – they are working to change the world for the better in such a unique way. Aiming to get everyone involved in conversations about biodiversity is just one of the ways Voices for Biodiversity is making a difference for ALL species on our increasingly fragile planet. Keep up the great work!

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a copy editor at Voices for Biodiversity and am thrilled to be a part of their important mission. V4B endeavors to bridge the gap between society and the scientific community in order to get everyone on the same page about protecting biodiversity—essential work at this critical junction for our planet.

Kathy268

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

If you love animals and/or are an advocate for environmental issues, it's difficult to find one organization that can easily--and interestingly--give you one stop shopping for current information. But Voices for Biodiversity does just that....and with an all-volunteer staff to boot (which is amazing). Stories are the key to change in the world, and with Voices for Biodiversity, you can find stories written by experts in their field, to better understand the issues facing the planet. Amazing organization shining the light on critical issues.

Megan130

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Great articles containing quality content, making biodiversity accessible!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I recently found this website and am so glad that I did. I really appreciate the well written and thought-provoking articles that provide me with exposure to diversity issues from around the world. The photography is also outstanding.
Thanks so much for a great website!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

This non profit ezine provides very thought provoking articles about the environment. I enjoy the original content by top experts and beautiful photography. I always learn new things here and am exposed to ideas that may or may not conflict with my own. Through this site they open my mind to new thoughts and considerations and I appreciate this. I have learned a lot here and have passed the site on to many others!

Donor

Rating: 5

What an exceptional website with a tremendous variety of info from around the world - from polar bears in the arctic to salamanders in West Virginia. Love the pictures!!

Donor

Rating: 5

I rely on Voices for Biodiversity to keep me relevant and informed of the issues concerning our natural environment. For example, I first heard about the "Sixth Mass Extinction" on V4B and not the issue is cropping up everywhere.
V4B attracts passionate and compassionate individuals who bring us stories of this astonishing earth in compelling and vivid detail. Thank you, V4B!!

Hilary13

Donor

Rating: 5

This is an inspiring, thoughtful, and educational web-magazine focused on issues pertaining to biodiversity as relayed through global stories. I enjoy everything from looking at photographs of elephants from Africa to reading a first-hand Massai accounting of indigenous culture and spirituality. V4B uses the power of storytelling to help us become conscious of our interdependence and thus shift our behaviors and habits to better serve the whole of life. Excellent organization and web magazine!

Teresita D.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a volunteer translator at the organization. Voices for Biodiversity is doing a great job, informing about the environment and society’s interaction with it. This is an anthropological, conservation-media platform that needs all the support it can get, for the sake of La Tierra, our Mother Earth and all the species that live on it.

Jean77

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am the Director of the Taos Environmental Film Festival and the Voices of Biodiversity has been a great resource for information on films, scientists, and professionals who are seeking solutions to the serious issues facing our planet.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This is a great resource for information on biodiversity from around the world. The stories are both thought-provoking and well-written. I love the photos!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I signed on with Voices for Biodiversity as the Outreach Coordinator in October of 2015, as it sparked my interest in calling the attention to the relationship between humans and their environments.

The organization is swiftly moving in exciting directions and has a great potential to grow into something much bigger with additional funding. I highly recommend supporting this organization through donations and volunteer time!

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been working with V4B for 2 years. Just love working here and deeply believe in its mission.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

Volunteering with Voices for Biodiversity has been a fantastic experience! The organization sets itself apart from others by elevating the voices of local people and community members from around the world. I am fascinated by how much the world can learn from these people whose lives and cultures are so closely intertwined with their surrounding environments. Their worldviews can inspire the entire world to adopt a less self-centered, and more mindful and respectful approach to conservation.

Catherine16

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I wanted to volunteer with Izilwane because of their interest in connecting the human animal to biodiversity conservation. People often forget that we influence lives of other species around the globe. Iz provides articles and information about our influence on other animal demise. Izilwane has provided me with experience in writing that I would like to pursue as a career. Everyone is welcoming and helpful. I am glad that I have had the opportunity to work with such interesting people and a great organization!

1 Chelsea4

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started interning for Izilwane in November because I was attracted to their vision to change perceptions about The Sixth Great Extinction in order to alter human being's negative impacts on biodiversity. Izilwane makes the connection between humans and the natural environment that needs to be understood in order to change the actions of all people. Izilwane takes an anthropological approach unlike any other nonprofit that I've seen. My experiences interning with Izilwane as an Outreach Assistant have taught me about the hard work that is put into running a successful nonprofit and the importance of organization, communication, and leadership. The Izilwane adventure is an awesome organization that is making strides to bring together the human animal and the global ecosystem.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane's approach to the biodiversity global issue is unique. They're idea of teaching young people to become eco reporters is Great! It's through educating our young that lasting change will become a reality. What better way than teaching them a very useable writing skill while at the same time the young peole learn the importance of biodiversity at.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane reminds me everyday that this earth is a home we share with all creatures. As the species that has carved out the largest claim on the planet we have a responsibility to be good stewards, a job we often dismally fail at and sometimes rise to the challenge. Izilwane brings both to light and informs across continents the work that needs to be done. I have written articles for this non-profit that focuses on the science and politics of our threatened biodiversity, while celebrating the beauty and soul of the natural world.

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Volunteer

Rating: 4

When I first heard about Izilwane, I was puzzled by the name. It means "animals" in Zulu, with the richness of a language that ties everything in the biosphere together, the human animal included. The mission of this non-profit organization is to hold the tide of extinction before our eyes. The losses of species, traditional land-based societies, and our precious wild places may seem to be as inexorable as the tug of the moon on our watery planet, but there is hope in this call to attention. Izilwane calls us to notice what is passing before it is too late. It gives hope with the stories of research and activism that touch our deep connection to nature and remind us that in caring, we can work to boom the tide, all of us, together.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane is the perfect place to engage with the nexus between people and the environment. It functions as a tremendous public service, illuminating contemporary environmental information in thorough, creative ways. I admire the mission of this nonprofit as well as the countless hours of free hard work that go into making sure it operates. I am proud to be associated with such a progressive, interdisciplinary news source that raises awareness about one of the most crucial issues of our time.

Juliet H.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Izilwane is innovative in its mission: teach the human animal how imperative all other animals (and all wildlife, for that matter) are to our ecosystem, well-being and livelihood. Izilwane decrees that humanity is not superior to all other life on earth, but, instead, integral to the planet's welfare. With compelling photo essays, videos and articles that share how people across the planet are impacting change, Izilwane is reshaping how humans think about humanity.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane offered me the opportunity to get involved and give back to the community in ways that most 18-year-olds can't. I don't know many peers who have had the opportunity to work with volunteers from all over the world, working to spread a positive message and contribute to global discussions. If it weren't for this organization, I would have spent my freshman year doing "normal" things, and not getting involved with a group that's trying to make a difference.

Kathryn P.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first came on board at Izilwane because of their unique perspective on conservation: instead of focusing JUST on the hard science, they attempt also to examine and evaluate humans' connections to the environment and what makes us want to protect it. They use a fascinating, multi-media platform in order to engage the general public and encourage them to participate in their discussions of conservation and our role in conservation actions. Izilwane is made up of passionate, creative individuals who each bring to the organization their unique perspectives on culture and the natural world, and I'm glad to see their reach growing far and wide! What a great group!

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

This small, brand-new online magazine approaches conservation from a completely different standpoint: rather than focusing on the science, per say (though there is plenty of it!), the writers focus on the human experience with conservation and the natural world. Instead of talking about the science of trees, they look at why human beings love trees and the culture surrounding hiking, picnics, climbing trees and other outdoor activities. Instead of talking about how the wolves fit into a great ecosystem, they talk about the cultural connections people have with wolves and the role wolves can play in the culture of tourism. It's a brilliant and new way to look at the roles we, as humans, play in conservation.

Leesteffy J.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Izilwane rocks. I "liked" them on FB because they have truly interesting articles that i often "share" with my FB friends. Izilwane keeps me educated and up to date about animal/human/environmental issues. I learn things that i wouldn't learn otherwise, and i really appreciate that. Hope they are able to continue to offer such a great service to the public.

Brian28

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Izilwane is bringing much needed information to the public, via articles and awareness. I personally read as many of their article links and posts as possible. They are a great example of what a non profit should be.

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I am grateful to the volunteers who bring this "ezine" to me. I wish it were mandatory reading for all schools for IZILWANE is a way to help people reconnect with nature. Our world is in a difficult place and IZILWANE has articles that help us see our interrelatedness with all living things and the importance of learning to live with all living things. Reading this "ezine" has strengthened my resolve to live in ways that help the environment. I am using my own bag and bottles when shopping, use cloth garbage bags that I can wash after emptying them, planting a garden organically, buying all organic produce. Now I am trying to buy a car that gets better gas mileage. I am planting more plants that attract animals and birds also. IZILWANE has strengthened my resolve to talk to the local stores about stopping using plastic bags which I will be discussing with the local ecology board this week.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Thank you, Izilwane team, for each bringing your heart, passion & knowledge to our shared goal of opening awareness to the truth that all life is inextricably linked. Reminding humanity that our impact *can* be a positive one. All it takes is living & choosing from a place of connection to each other, to all.

Gregory S.

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Izilwane has motivated and involved volunteers and staff; forward-thinking vision; and works to contribute to an important dialogue on the ways people interact with their habitat. Change starts with knowledge; Izilwane is an important and well-done piece of the puzzle.

DevD

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The best thing that made me want to volunteer for Izilwane were the people who have made this non-profit such a great place of interaction, ideas around bid-diversity and the blinding passion that each one of them exhibits to grow the place into a community of like minded people who are all working towards one common goal. Bring about a positive change,

Be it Tara's unwavering passion and hard work or the entire team's commitment to the vision and mission that Izilwane stands for today, it is an amazing feat that in such a short time, the team has grown beyond borders from New Mexico to Bangalore with a plethora of talented professionals who have come forward on their own to make a dream come true.

A dream to build a better world... a more sustainable world

And they all believed in this dream because they became a part of it....and made Izilwane a part of their lives.

Izilwane values its human capital to bring about a change in this world. The work ethic is no less than that of a centre of excellence but unlike research centres, here people do it for the simple reason;

They want to make this work..they live the ideals the organisation stands for

In age Izilwane is much younger to many great established non profit organizations, but in pride, passion and focus, to me they rank right there at the very top

Volunteer

Rating: 4

Izilwane inspired and motivated me to consider a number of aspects with regard to wildlife currently under extreme presure due to a variety of human-caused impacts. I am currently working on an article as a result of my experience with the organization.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In 2009 I was introduced to Izilwane. At that time the organization was Tara Lumpkin. Her enthusiasm and conviction to education the public on issues relating to loss of biodiversity, living sustainable, protecting and recovering wild spaces was (and remains) palpable. It is rare to find someone with this level of conviction and commitment.

Over the past two years the organization has morphed and Izilwane has developed its own identity. The organization has grown and the passion that Tara feels has attracted many like-minded people. Izilwane is doing a fabulous job of providing the public at large with information on the state of the Earth and challenges people to become involved in the process of protecting our precious resources and living less species-centric.

Donor

Rating: 5

Izilwane has such a unique, cross-discipline take on ecology and conservation. The articles on the Web site are fascinating and informative. The report on the study of zoo patrons is one great example.

Susan R.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane gives voice to the totality of living beings, a much needed voice and perspective given our current environmental threats.

Meilie Cruse

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I am utterly fascinated by the natural world and always seek ways and outlets to be more connected with sustaining it. While researching how I could contribute, I found a lot of information on organizations focusing on conservation, biodiversity, and sustainability but really wanted to lead my efforts to an outlet that was also involved in the cause. This is how I discovered Izilwane. Editor in Chief Tara Lumpkin was looking for a managing editor and our conversations lead to forging a long distance professional relationship. For the next four months, I worked with Tara on the redesign of the site, the functionality, content management, and submission guidelines. I continue to keep abreast of Izilwane's work and intend for our affiliation to grow

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane is an excellent organization that coordinates efforts of conservationists from a broad range of disciplines. It provides a place for anthropology in the world of biodiversity and provides a new perspective on a topic that was previously dominated by biologists. Izilwane’s aim to connect individuals to the issue of biodiversity through broadening their perspectives is a model strategy for all conservation organizations especially those that deal with public relations.

Jami W.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I seemed to become a bit of a black sheep in my graduate department as I began to discuss my plans to study wolves from an anthropological perspective. People would jokingly point down the hall telling me that the wildlife biologists were that way while they silently wondered how I was going to study wolves under the discipline of Anthropology. I knew that my research would make sense once it became clearer and I was able to better explain the concept.

It was from my German Shepard, Trooper, that I was shown how significantly people's reactions to him vary, while he remains the same. The human is never asked to adapt, or even look at their reaction to the animal, it is the animal that must adapt to humans. As my research took shape and I argued that conflicts surrounding wolves were more often conflicts between groups of people about wolves than actual conflicts between wolves and people, my research was acknowledged as legitimate and important, even published.

Not surprisingly, my search for jobs was discouraging and I wondered where I was going to be able to apply what I thought to be very important knowledge regarding our human relationship with animals. Then I found an ad in High Country News for Izilwane. It was unbelievable how perfect it was; studying loss of biodiversity from an anthropological perspective was right up my alley.

I've been an integral part of this dynamic, intelligent, motivated team ever since. The fact that we are all volunteers makes our participation an ongoing choice, continually strengthening our level of commitment to a cause that we all feel is necessary and long overdue. I am very grateful for my involvement with this professional, well-run, amazingly organized, non-profit organization

5

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

I learned about Izilwane in the summer of 2009 and was immediately struck by the concept of relating to the animal kingdom as a co-habitant rather than as a member of the separate and supposedly superior kingdom of Man (re the medieval the Kingdoms of Plants, Animals, and Man). With a national forest for my front yard, I had frequent and daily opportunities to be in proximity to elk, deer, coyotes, birds, and rodents, and enjoyed the beauty and charm of their wild and non-imposing company. When I adopted a dog that Fall, however, I began to think about my relationship with other animals at a much more personal level. Izilwane was a key element in my growing awareness. The numerous stories that were shared among the staff were both inspiring and informative, and my interest in experiencing my own animal nature more directly as well as expanding my ability to relate to another animal species became a new adventure. At this point, I am most struck by the simple awareness of a clearly evident consciousness that is capable of communicating its non-human self. Without the stories and perspective of Izilwane, it's very likely that my adopted dog would have remained a so-called

Review from Guidestar

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Izilwane is a vital link toward in establishing awareness of the importance in realizing the innate connection we as human beings share with our environment and the creatures that inhabit our planet. Through education and research they are highlighting these similarities so that we may co-exist and thus secure the future of our planet.

6

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane is a very inspiring organization and I look forward to the positive impact it can have on our planet. While being involved in Izilwane, I have learned about how we, as human beings, perceive our environment and what we can do to shift our perception to be more united with the entire ecosystem.

6

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Izilwane is dedicated to bring more awareness to the interrelatedness of humanity and Nature for the benefit of all life.

3

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane is a non-profit organization that focuses on raising people's awareness to their connection with other species. This is a necessary aspect for the survival of the planet. They are in hope that with the launch of their new online magazine that they can reach a large audience and spread this message around the globe. I have enjoyed learning many things regarding these topics over the last few months and am glad to be able to help get this message across through my involvement with the project.

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Izilwane is a nonprofit that is educating the public on the importance of the connection between humans and animals. Day to day, we continue to ignore the decrease in biodiversity and the enormous impacts that human population has on the other inhabitants of the Earth. Izilwane provides the understanding of the connection we have with global ecosystems. This organization is increasing awareness which will help develop more solutions to deforestation and extinction. This is shown through explorers notes from the field and research about the connection between humans and other species. Every biotic and abiotic organism plays a related role in its ecosystem.

Review from Guidestar

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

My experience with Perception International has been wonderful so far. I work as part of a time dedicated to launching the Izilwane online magazine, an effort to document human-animal relationships and help humans understand their role in the global ecosystem. What I love about the vision for the project is the sense of connection it fosters, as we have been working on collecting notes from the field from people all over the world with all different levels of experience.

Review from Guidestar

5

Volunteer

Rating: 5

In working for this organization, I’ve become more aware of how each species plays an important role in the ecosystem. Also, I’ve learned more about how each human being’s carbon footprint can damage the environment and reduce the number of species on the planet. I’d been previously unaware of the Sixth Great Extinction and now, having been introduced to this concept, I’ve been surprised at how many species are dying every day. Also, I’ve been trying to educate other people to make them more aware of how much harm we are doing and to realize that, armed with this knowledge, we can stop the loss of biodiversity. My work on the interactive magazine aspect of this organization allowed me to see that even a simple story, such as one about a woman rescuing baby rabbits, illustrates that almost all of us interact with other species and that we are all a part of a larger global ecosystem.

Review from Guidestar