About Flight Club Foundation
Parrots are a fundamentally iconic species of animal that represents the health of the planet and the communities of people who affect them. Parrots can be owned as pets, yet are endangered, exotic species as well. This website and the Foundation were created to help the general public and the parrot community understand all aspects of how parrots impact people's lives.
The Flight Club, on which this Foundation is based, is a membership-based organization similiar in nature to Bird Clubs in our area. Flight Club created the notion of the need for parrots to participate in PARROT PLAYDATES. To not only learn to possibly fly but also to socialize both birds and people alike.
The relaxed, social atmosphere of the club for the people and birds often tantalizes regular members of the public to watch the birds antics and socialization. We offer our Playdates for anyone to attend, but restrict parrot attendance to needing veterinary exams and first time non bird visits.
People who had no idea about our program have shown up at the two community centers we rent monthly walk away remembering us for years. Many comments such as "I had no idea..." or "I did not care until now..." pervade the many events we attend as Flight Club Foundation.
Parrots are a critical ambassador for people to fully understand environmental awareness and lift the blind of typical NIMBY attitudes--"Not In My Back Yard". We have had great success learning more about what we need to do to change when we have animals that are so alien from us yet can speak like us.
Flight Club Foundation has since spread it's wings from being a mere social club to being a vast networking agency to help parrots and people everywhere. Equally realizing how important all forms of parrot care and acquisition are needed for a healthy future. This includes the need to support humane care in legislation to promoting breeding to linking to quality adoption programs to sanctuary to educational outreach and more. No one part of the wheel can break as all are needed.
Flight Club History
The Flight Club Foundation was created by Debbie Goodrich, Kathy Morrison and Jackie Cottrell in December of 2012.
Debbie Goodrich, Current President of Flight Club Foundation, has been a professional bird trainer, educator and even Curator since 1996. She is a professional member of IAATE, ABMA, IAABC. She has owned her own business, Parrot Ambassadors, that has been operational since 2001. Before 1996, she received her BA in Psychobiology from the University of California at Santa Cruz, specializing in animal behavior and cognition.
Kathy Morrison, Current Treasurer of Flight Club Foundation, is working on her PhD thesis, has a reintroduction program with Buffon's Macaws in Columbia and has raised two sons who also have their PhD. She brings many of the sciences and discpline and in situ conservation work to Flight Club Foundation's information base.
Jackie Cottrell was the one who actually started the entire concept of having parrots flying indoors after working many years with Chris Biro. With his tutalage, Jackie learned about the many aspects of flying parrots require, including the most important one--how to get them back if they fly off. She has had pet parrots since very young and currently houses over 13 greenwing macaws in outdoor aviaries as well as in her home. She's the one who has kept Fly Days going, no matter what.
Together, they created a very small, invite-only Flight Club that really acted more like Fight Club that no one talked about. There were other, larger clubs in the area promoting indoor flight and we felt we did not want to compete and remain exclusive to close friends. The cost of renting our property was low at the time.
Things changed abruptly when many of the bird clubs of the area and bird based events of the area began collapsing and then disappearing entirely. More members became interested in joining us. Then, interested in starting a bird-based event from scratch.
From an invite-only band of friends to an international philanthropy helping parrots, we cannot wait to see what our future brings for both people and parrots!
Flight Club Foundation Future
Seattle Parrot Expo remains our largest fundraising event of the year. It now retains the title of the only remaining parrot-centered event of the entire Pacific Northwest. The focus of Seattle Parrot Expo is not only to raise funds to keep Fly Days operational, but also to raise funds to help other NGO's, nonprofits and people who own parrots globally as well as helping parrots struggling in the wild.
Seattle Parrot Expo's focus has been introducing children and families to the world of parrots while simultaneously providing furthering education credits to professionals and enthusiasts already engaged. This mix has been difficult, but each year, we see more people coming to the event and growing in interest where we now see, on average, 1,000 people coming through the doors.
Every year we receive enough funding from Seattle Parrot Expo post expense coverage, we give back to the community in many ways. Firstly, is our Parrot Grant Program that has awarded now over $6,500 in Grant Awards to local sanctuaries, in situ conservation and even intelligence studies in parrots.
Our goal is to be the network organization that gives you information that is as update and accurate as possible about parrots. We hope you find our work to be worth your time and your donation.
Debbie Goodrich, President