Texas Parks and Wildlife Foundation’s Gear Up for Game Wardens program topped a $1 million fundraising milestone just two years after the program launched. Thanks to you, more than $1.2 million has been raised to provide the specialty gear our Texas Game Wardens need to be safer, more efficient, and more effective.
Since the program launched in October 2017, close to 900 donations have been made. As a result, specialty equipment and gear has been purchased and deployed across all eight game warden regions in Texas. Specialty gear provided by the program that is now being used by Texas Game Wardens includes search and rescue (SAR) drones, SAR inflatable boats, side scan sonar units, water rescue dry suits, night vision and thermal imaging units, ATVs, UTVs and specialized K-9 units.
“Texas Game Wardens play an important role in the lives of all Texans,” said Dan Flournoy, chair of the Gear Up for Game Wardens Leadership Council. “Along with their duty to protect the natural resources we all hold dear, they are also on the frontlines of natural disasters such as Hurricane Harvey. There have been other significant flooding events in Texas since Gear Up for Game Wardens launched, and there is no doubt in my mind that specialty gear provided through this program has saved lives. We are deeply grateful to the hundreds of Texans who have supported Gear Up for Game Wardens.”
Donations have come from all corners of the state and in all amounts, from $25 to more than $66,000 from the Saltwater Anglers League of Texas (SALT). The Sabine River Authority has also stepped up in appreciation of what Texas Game Wardens do for the people of Texas and has donated more than $70,000 in several grants to the program. An outreach event in Concan in March 2019 called Women Who Wander dedicated the proceeds of the event to Gear Up for Game Wardens for a total of more than $34,000. In addition, co-chairs of the leadership council have staged fundraisers all over the state to fund equipment for their local game wardens.
“The local committees are what make the program successful, and 100 percent of every donation received for equipment goes directly to purchase the specialty gear that our Texas Game Wardens need,” said TPWF Executive Director Susan Houston. “We are deeply grateful for the support of the committees, and for each and every donation we have received.”
Texas Game Wardens have watched over the lands, waters, wildlife and people of Texas for more than 100 years. Every year, Texas Game Wardens patrol over 10 million miles by vehicle and 130,000 hours by boat, facing challenges as unique as the 254 counties they serve.
Find out how you can donate specialty equipment for your Texas Game Wardens: