Volunteer Spotlight January 2019 - Estraven Lupino-Smith
In this, the very first of 2019's Volunteer Spotlights, we'd like to highlight one of our bat-tastic volunteers - Estraven Lupino-Smith! Local artist and one serious "bat-vocate", they have shown time and time again their dedication and commitment to bat conservation. Estraven counted bats with us over the summer and also collaborated with us to help create our biggest batty event ever - the Big Bat Bash, for which they created an incredibly intricate bat art installation and a unique sound and video experience using real footage from the bats living in the attic at the Metchosin Community Hall.
When we asked Estraven what their favourite experience with us has been so far and why they initially became a volunteer with HAT, they enthusiastically replied:
"[Some of my favourite experiences] are being out at the Metchosin [Community] Hall meeting other enthusiastic bat counters and watching as many as 1200 bats emerge. It's a joy to watch them and see other people from young to old(er) share that wonder. Of course, the Big Bat Bash was absolutely awesome. I got involved because I wanted to partner with a conservation organization that was working on bats, and it seem[ed] like HAT was doing outstanding work with the bat count and beyond. It's been my pleasure to get to know the staff and other volunteers who make HAT a great place with successful programming."
Thank you to Estraven for all their hard work, and to all who have supported bat conservation with HAT so far. We are truly grateful for the support and hope that Estraven's experience will inspire others to get involved in bat conservation with HAT. If you'd like to volunteer with our bat program in 2019, be sure to watch for opportunities in our summer newsletters.
Estraven, HAT Executive Director Katie Blake, and HAT Stewardship Coordinator Paige Erickson-McGee were also interviewed by the Goldstream Gazette at our Big Bat Bash.
This article is an excerpt from the January edition of our monthly E-news, The Fern.