IOU Foundation is pleased to contribute funds to reTURN the Favor New Jersey and Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey. These donations were inspired by our own Roxanne Toothman, Advisor to the President and Director of Education for Sustainable Development. Roxanne, known to us as Rocky, has been a passionate protector of her beloved Ventnor City shoreline for well over 20 years. Rocky explains, “I am so fortunate to be able to walk the beach almost every day with the sole purpose of saving critters in distress and keeping our beaches pristine by picking up plastic bags, balloons, and glass. My critters include Monarch Butterflies, ladybugs, crabs, shorebirds, and, most importantly, Horseshoe Crabs.”
The extraordinary horseshoe crab has been around for more than 300 million years, making it older than dinosaurs. Horseshoe crabs have blue blood which is harvested because it contains a molecule that is crucial to the medical research community. Sellers can command $15,000 per quart. Sadly, the population of horseshoe crabs has declined by 90 percent over the last 15 years because of over-harvesting and degraded habitat which will harm its vital ecosystem.
reTURN the Favor New Jersey is a collaborative effort that organizes volunteers to rescue stranded horseshoe crabs, increase its awareness to the public, and collect data to aid in the management and restoration of horseshoe crabs on New Jersey’s open and closed beaches.
Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey is dedicated to preserving rare and imperiled species of wildlife that live and breed in, and migrate through New Jersey. CWF carries out research on species, implements conservation plans to stall declines and start recovery, restores habitat, and educates volunteers to help protect and preserve New Jersey’s magnificent biodiversity.
According to Rocky, “If I can educate and inspire others to volunteer and take action to protect and conserve our exquisite shoreline and all its inhabitants for future generations, I will be a supremely content beach walker.”
IOU Foundation and its consortium partners Universidad Azteca and Central University of Nicaragua are gratified to support reTURN the Favor New Jersey and Conserve Wildlife Foundation for New Jersey. Empowering people to change the world is a vital part of our charitable endeavors.