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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

North American Bear Center

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Services, Animals, Arts & Culture, Museums, Wildlife Sanctuaries

Mission: The Need for the Bear Center: Bears have been unfairly demonized worldwide in folklore, print, movies, and taxidermy. Generations have been raised to fear them or perceive them as economic risks. All 8 bear species are now listed as vulnerable, threatened, or endangered in parts or all of their ranges. Black bears, the most numerous species, are listed as threatened or endangered in 5 states but are expanding in the Upper Midwest and northeastern United States. There is a worldwide need to replace myths with facts, teach practical methods for minimizing conflicts, preserve habitat, and stop poaching for body parts. The need for accurate information becomes ever more urgent as more and more people move into bear habitat.

Target demographics: Bears world-wide

Geographic areas served: Ely, MN and all around the globe

Programs: The North American Bear Center is the only Science/Nature museum of its kind. Dedicated to replacing myths and misconceptions with facts, it lets people learn from the bears themselves about bear behavior, ecology, and their relations with humans. In addition to our onsite Learning Center, you can view our four Ambassador Bears, play in our Cub Room, watch films in our Theater and walk along our Interpretive Trail. From the comfort of your home, you can watch two live video feeds of our bear viewing area and learn and participate on Lily the Black Bear's and North American Bear Center Facebook pages. In addition, our Educational Outreach Program supplies comprehensive bear / nature curriculums and materials for K - 12th grade teachers across the country.

Community Stories

144 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

4

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

The NABC is a wonderful interactive experience for children and adults alike, and provides detailed information on black bear ecology, biology and behaviors. I've been there three years in a row and it is always a terrific learning experience!

6

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Fantastic operation on low budget. Friendly, knowledgeable staff and top quality exhibits with true bear information gleaned from first hand research not inferred from remote samples and prevailing opinion. My traditionally taught biological training was challenged and I walked away all the better for it. Please help support their critical mission. I can't think of a more dynamic organization!

12

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Kara asked where the money went. Its never been a secret. At first the money went towards the huge debt for the existing facilities. Even before that was fully paid off a program was started to provide support for teachers in the classroom to educate students about black bears. Currently money is being raised for a new building to further support that education. Most of the staff are unpaid volenteers and even Dr Rogers recieves only a very modest salary. Its certainly not enough for the countless hours he devotes to bears. This is a great organization that has lready accomplished a lot and will continue to accomplish much more.

9

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This non-profit ranks among the unique. The leaders, researchers, work 7 da/wk and easily 12-14 hrs./da. so that others will understand the important niche the American Black Bear holds in the world of wildlife and how humans can learn to co-exist with them. There are no big salaries or performance vehicles, only hours of forest trekking, data compiling and communication. The NABC is among the finest of non-profits-a gem of integrity and "do onto others".

14

Volunteer

Rating: 5

If you want to learn about bears, especially black bears, the North American Bear Center in Ely, Minnesota is the place you must visit. Exhibits, lots of information, a cub room for kids and their three residents, Ted, Honey and Lucky. Three happy bears that live in one of the most beautiful natural enclosures one can find in the world. I visited last year and this summer I will cross the ocean again from Spain to visit the NABC´s and meet its wonderful staff. Bear lovers with the mission to educate the world about the true nature of black bears.

13 Julie42

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Last year i had the pleasure of visiting the N.A.B.C, It was a wonderful experience, the staff were more than helpful, so much to do and see, its not until you go there you realise how much you dont know about bears ! I learnt so much! seeing the 3 captive bears was the highlight for me, they have a wonderful natural area in which to forage like wild bears and a lovely pond too. I cant praise this organisation enough and i hope they get more visitors to learn about the wonderful Black Bear . I will be going back again this year! I live in the UK and it is worth the trip on so many levels, thank you Dr Lynn Rogers and his Biologist Sue Mansfield for giving me the chance to learn !

Review from Guidestar

6

Volunteer

Rating: 1

I found them to be inconsistent with what they tell you, always begging for money and yet the money does not seem to go for what they tell you initially. And be careful of the supporters still there for if you disagree, they name call, tell you to leave , and try to ruin you. The researchers and those involved are shrouded in secrecy and always telling volunteers not to tell anyone what you see like during hunting season when they were trying to keep hunters away and during trips to the center where you are allowed to kiss and touch the bears.

17

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been to the North American Bear Center and I fully support their mission - to educate people about black bears. Dr. Lynn Rogers, Sue Mansfield and all the staff at the Bear Center are passionate about black bears and it shows. A previous reviewer, here Kara Johanson, is a former "disgruntled" moderator on Lily the Black Bear's Facebook page, who along with a few others, were let go from their moderating duties due to their extreme power trips. People complained about them, and they were let go, to start fresh with the FB page. "Kara" also known as Jill Wheaton Lindsay, has now made it her mission to find every outlet she can to discredit Lynn Rogers' work and slander him. It's called slander and harassment Jill. If you're not careful, you just might find yourself in an embarassing situation and in a bit o' trouble. ;) Your first mistake was accidentally "outing" yourself. LOL

5 Kara J.

Donor

Rating: 1

If their expenses are only a third of their revenue, something is very questionable. Where does the rest of the money go and why do they keep begging for more?

Review from Guidestar

17

Donor

Rating: 5

what an awesome place learning about bears and how to live with them in peace, I used to be terribly afraid of black bears but have found out they are really gentle creayures who's lives are ruled by fear and hunger, Dr. Lynn Rogers and Sue Mansfield are truly wonderful educators, and have helped me overcome my fear of these north american treasures, we sould cherish them....... thank you