Education is our primary focus. We work to improve awareness about the needs of parrots around the world including those in captivity, in retail situations, in the wholesale and retail pet trades, in breeding situations, in rescue, sanctuary and welfare organizations, and awareness of and about the birds in their indigenous locations.
We have developed a series of educational classes, materials and lectures covering varied topics of bird care for the interested parrot enthusiast and potential adopter. With its national volunteer liaisons, a broader audience can be reached with this important educational network.
The Foundation educates through a variety of mediums:
Informational Programs and the Disbursement of Educational Materials
We conduct informational programs and provide educational materials to the public — including many retail stores and bird clubs, veterinary practices, bird marts, shows and conferences — through aviary tours, original and reproduced printed educational packets, data compilations, newsletters, website information, written and email correspondence, publications and journals, and telephone support and counseling.
Staff and birds often appear at related animal awareness events, make public appearances at venues such as Rotary Club meetings, senior care facilities, or upon request to appear from other organizations. Our off-site volunteer liaisons assist nationally with similar types of appearances providing educational literature, informational support, and hands-on interaction with birds.
Authorship of Articles and Booklets
Our staff writes articles and booklets concerning bird welfare. Many informative articles appear in our newsletter, “The Front Perch™” and throughout our website.
Our Education Packet includes the booklet, “How to Care for your Companion Bird”, and sells to breeders, hobbyists and other interested persons, such as veterinary practitioners, to help educate the public about total bird welfare. The brochure, Establishing a Parrot Welfare Organization”, provides substantial examination of this topic with information on establishing an operating parrot welfare program/facility and includes basic, non-legal information about becoming a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.
The Foundation also provides information to interested individuals about how to provide for their parrot’s future when they can no longer physically provide for them in its two brochures, “ A Lasting Tribute to a Lifetime of Love”, and “Providing for your Companion Parrot”.
Our staff or volunteer liaisons generally lecture on bird care and related issues at least twice a month, often off-premises. This includes numerous school visitors onsite and at the educational facility, providing tremendous resource information to children of all ages, veterinary technicians and interns, pre-veterinary and veterinary students, as well as to other animal welfare organizations, hobbyists, breeders and newly interested persons, potential adopters and those who are simply curious.
Symposiums and Conferences
We often participate in and attend national and international conferences, and maintain affiliations with organizations which focus on parrots and related animal welfare, husbandry, education or veterinary topics. National Continuing Education credits are offered at most of the Foundation’s symposium and conference events. In the past we’ve held other educational programs, fundraisers and benefits such as the Psummer Psittacine Pscelebration, Art Affair Extraordinaire, Kids ‘n Kritters, and Parrots in Paradise that underscore the parrot welfare cause. Volunteer liaisons hold local promotional and educational events to provide this information on a national level.
Many national bird clubs request permission to use our material in their newsletters and provide copies of our educational material to their members at large. Founder Julie Murad, and/or other Foundation staff are frequently requested to present at avicultural venues, pet store and bird club events.
Coordination with Educational Facilities
We work with local, regional and national school districts, community colleges, veterinary technician programs and university veterinary programs. For example, our staff has participated in the avian care segment of the exotics program to the highly regarded certified veterinary technician programs at Colorado Mountain College, and the Bel-Ray Technical Institute, as well as to other national accredited animal technician programs.
We have presented bi-annually to the Colorado Association of Animal Control Officers and to other interested humane organizations. Julie Murad has presented at the annual conferences of the Association of Avian Veterinarians and to many veterinary school programs nationwide, with an avian and exotics program on non-medical issues often overlooked in medical practices.
The Gabriel Foundation hosts on-site extended internship programs for college students, veterinary technicians, and pre-veterinary and veterinary students. Many persons interested in starting their own parrot care organization, parrot pet-sitting business or adoption/rehabilitation program are frequent visitors and interns to the our aviary and facilities.
We welcome interested public, rescue, sanctuary, welfare organizations, veterinarians and members to participate in hands-on care of the aviary and the birds! The Foundation willingly provides its materials to interested volunteers to distribute appropriately in their local area. We developed a volunteer training program for training, teaching, educational and safety purposes. Our organization hosts family fun, on-site volunteer work weekends and picnic lunches at the aviary throughout the year.
The Gabriel Foundation developed the Veterinary Support Network that continues to increase its membership. We continue to develop and expand the Pfoster Home Network with local and national individuals and bird clubs to assist with many of our programs.
The Foundation is working with other state animal control departments/agencies to provide a basic understanding of the specialized needs and care of parrots entering their facilities in greater numbers than ever before with educational material, resource support and transfer of birds. We have achieved strong international awareness through our website, and continue to work internationally with other organizations sharing similar goals, providing requested information and educational support.