Not In Town | @notintownlive | 17 Nov 2017
Krista Wright, PBI’s executive director said: “This annual award honors individuals who have made significant contributions to polar bear conservation. Merv and Lynda’s long-standing commitment to polar bears and their sea ice home deserves our heartfelt thanks and recognition.”
The Winnipeg couple helped to put the town of Churchill, Manitoba—known for its annual gathering of polar bears—on the map.
“We always say that once you see polar bears in the wild, it changes your life forever, inspiring you to care,” said Wright. “And that caring goes hand in hand with their conservation.”
From the beginning, the Gunters have partnered with PBI to support efforts to conserve polar bears, generously donating countless hours on Tundra Buggies to PBI research staff and educators.
Their specially outfitted Buggy One serves as a mobile broadcast studio, allowing PBI to air its live educational Tundra Connections webcasts from the shores of Hudson Bay. In addition, the Buggy streams live views of the polar bears as they wait for the ice to form.
The Polar Bear Cams attract a worldwide audience, raising awareness of the threats to polar bears, and are broadcast in partnership with explore.org, PBI, Frontiers North Adventures, and Parks Canada.
The company also donates Tundra Buggy space to PBI’s educational partners, allowing them to see polar bears and the tundra first hand and to gain valuable messaging related to polar bears and climate change.
PBI’s annual fundraising gala in Winnipeg takes place every year in late October or early November. All proceeds from the event support PBI’s conservation and research efforts in Canada, home to two-thirds of the world’s polar bears.
The 2017 event included a special presentation by Jay Ingram, former co-host of the Discovery Channel’s Daily Planet, a dinner, silent auction, and more.
(Images by Sujoy Dhar)
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