Where are the Greens? Maybe saving a frozen stork is a rural job not paid for by European money
There are nearly 50 non-governmental animal rescue organizations in Bulgaria utilizing millions from European projects. When counting storks, or their nests, under European projects, the media is inundated with their press releases, but when the storks need to be rescued, nothing at all is heard from them.
The whole of Bulgaria was talking for two days about the humble kind-hearted people from the villages who sheltered the storks, returning for the spring but frozen due to the cold weather in our country.
First of all, with the fall of the temperatures and the hurricane winds on Saturday, unique photos of storks appeared on social networks showing hundreds of birds landing on the road between Sofia and Samokov, to avoid being blown away by the wind. The call was – “Beware not to run the birds over, they are everywhere!”
For twenty-four hours the birds and the drivers were saving each other, and it was only the environmental organizations that didn’t manage to see those pictures and come and help to resolve the situation.
Then, Safet Khalid from the Silistra village of Zaritsa, posted on Facebook that he was sheltering, in his house, some storks with legs frozen like icicles. He warmed them up with blankets and fed them himself. There was widespread admiration for this poor, hard-working man who, at the sight of the miserable birds, had taken them into his own home, with his wife and children, without hesitation.
Yet,still there was nothing seen or heard from the non-governmental animal rescue organizations.
After Khalid, there was another family from the village of Naum in the municipality of Kaolin, district of Shumen, who also sheltered a total of 9 birds in their home.
So, it turns out that the poor people who live in the Bulgarian villages continue to take care of nature without hesitation and without expecting anything in return.
But my question is, where are the hundreds of citizens from the dozens of non-governmental animal rescue organizations?
When they count storks, or their nests, for European projects, the media is inundated with their press releases, but when storks need to be saved, nothing at all is heard from them.
The whole of Bulgaria understood that the storks were suffering, but only the green organizations, created mainly for this purpose, did not understand and were nowhere to be seen.
Off the top of my head, I can think of a dozen such non-governmental organizations such as Green Balkans, Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds, Biodiversity Foundation, Wildlife Foundation, and there is even the Animal Rescue Society Shumen (where several storks were saved,) and the same organizations exist in all the other major cities.
We admire the activities of the representatives of these organizations while ensuring the preservation of the Gopher, the Black Vulture, the Imperial Eagle, the Brown Bear and the Sturgeons, but they should also get involved in the more difficult situations with animals, especially when everyone else does. Not only that, but they should really intervene before others.
All these non-governmental organizations, of which there are at least 20 for animal rescue alone, are funded by ecoprojects, and they are paid massive sums of money from European funds. There’s nothing wrong with this and it’s right that someone should take care of nature, animals and the vanishing species, but it is not right to be selective and only do something when being paid vast amounts of European money.
Some facts and figures:
The Green Balkans Association participated in the restoration of the Gopher in Sinite Kamani Park and the care of the Black Vulture and the Imperial Eagle populations, for the total amount of BGN 98,000.
The Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds has been engaged in restoring the Capercaillie, the Three-toed and White-backed Woodpeckers for BGN 434,000.
The Biodiversity Foundation completed a project for BGN 515,000, on the protection of the Chamois and Brown Bear.
The Wildlife Balkans Association became an associated contractor for restoring Vitosha habitats for BGN 1.9 million.
It is not every spring that the storks are suffering and, if it does happen, it is usually only for a few days, so the nongovernmental organizations shall take care of the migratory birds now.
Taking care of nature and animals is the duty of all of us and, as has been shown, most people are willing to do this without asking for anything in return.
If it did turn out that saving storks is not a matter of humanity but a subject of a paid project for the non-governmental green organizations, I would personally be very disappointed.
So, the question of where these organizations are now and why do they not perform their job properly, still remains. Or is the answer that they don’t take rural work but only well-paid European projects in which ten people carry an eagle’s nest, stick by stick, all day long?
The Greens are obliged to uphold their reputation now!