By now you all know that I work at Bridgehead, and having stated it numerous times before, I’m assuming you also know by now how much I love it. Well, it just got better…
Not possible!? I know. But it did.
One of the things that I’ve noticed about working at Bridgehead – a company which sets a huge example as far as environmental awareness – is that it attracts a variety of different and very interesting people. People work for Bridgehead for a number of different reasons, but it’s usually way more than just a job. More often, I’ve found my co-workers to care deeply about the same things that I care about, namely: the environment, ethical treatment of people and animals, and last but not least… yummy coffee, tea & food.
So this past weekend one of my wonderful co-workers, Kirk Cushing, invited all of us to his family property. It was more or less a belated holiday party and even though it was way past the holiday season, it was easily the BEST holiday party I’ve ever been to.
Kirk’s family own and operate the International School for Earth Studies which is a private, interdisciplinary institution specializing in three main disciplines: wildlife rehabilitation, outdoors recreation and environmental education. They have roughly 500 acres of amazing property about 1.5 hours north-east of Ottawa.
They. Have. Their. Own. Lake.
Plus they have as many trees and hills that you could possibly ever want, not to mention an incredible variety of animals. It’s truly a wonderful place.
I wasn’t able to meet Kirk’s dad, but the rest of his family were warm, welcoming and very passionate about everything that the school stands for. I was instantly struck by how knowledgeable they all were, experts in their own right from a variety of topics ranging from dog sledding to animal rehabilitation. From what I could tell, they are very wholesome people who value the art of good conversation and hard work.
They are also incredibly compassionate people who are known for their ability to rescue and rehabilitate local wild animals. Injured or abandoned bears, raccoons, deer, and various birds of prey all find their way to the Cushings where they will be cared for with expert and capable hands. Sometimes, like the grumpy bear cub that keeps waking up from what’s supposed to be her winter nap, they are able to be released back into the wild after recuperating. But sometimes their injuries mean that they have found a new forever home, like the flightless Snowy Owl with an injured wing.
As I’m sure you can imagine, the rehabilitation costs are not always cheap, not to mention the number of mouths they have to feed. As such, the Cushings have set up the Cushing Nature Foundation which provides support to not only their own animal rehabilitation services, but also to any endeavor that provides shelter and/or protection to any indigenous animal native to the province of Quebec.
If this speaks to you, please click here to find out how you can help the foundation.
And now the photos…
So thank you to Kirk and his wonderful family for welcoming us into their special little world. We loved being there with you and cannot wait to come back and visit!
ps. The Cushing’s all wear Steger Mukluk’s and I was lucky enough to be loaned a pair. EASILY the comfiest and warmest boots I’ve ever worn. I would like to get my own very soon. They blew my North Face ones out of the water times ten bazillion. (Sad but true!)