As you know the greatest threats to bears are loss of habitat and intolerant human attitudes. Vince Shute dreamed of a world where bears and humans would co-exist in peace. Since 1995, the volunteers of The American Bear Association, a 501(c)(3)non-profit organization, have been diligently working to educate approximately a quarter million visitors to the Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary. However, the fate of our mission and that of the wild bears who have been visiting there for more than four decades is in peril.

Please help us secure their future by donating towards the purchase of critical bear habitat surrounding the Sanctuary – before it’s too late! Together, we can make it a better world for both humans and bears through education, observation and experience!

Donate Now

American Bear Association / VSWS Needs List

The American Bear Association and Vince Shute Wildlife Sanctuary are in constant need of donated items. Our needs range anything from stationery to batteries to food. But just as important, we need people’s donated time and skills! Any help you can give us is greatly appreciated.

The American Bear Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. The value of your donated item(s) is deductible to the full extent of the law. We will provide you with documentation for your tax records. If you have any questions about making a donation, please contact us.

Volunteer Supplies

  • Packaged and canned foods ( soups, juices, snacks, chips, sauces, pastas, tuna, meats)
  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Gallon jugs of drinking water
  • Matches and long Bic Lighters
  • Fans
  • Bugspray and sunscreen
  • Candles

Household Items

  • Strong plastic 30 to 33 gallon trash bags
  • Dish detergent (eco-friendly preferred) and cleaning supplies.
  • Plastic totes to fit under beds in cabins and for storage
  • Paper goods such as towels, napkins, wipe-its, toilet paper, etc (recycled products preferred).
  • Hand and push brooms
  • Sturdy carpet sweepers
  • Caution signs & cones- WET FLOORS, SLIPPERY WHEN WET, WATCH YOUR STEP etc.
  • Floor scrapers with replacement blades

Office Supplies

  • Office supplies (envelopes, printer paper, pens, paper clips, staples, file folders) and postage stamps
  • Weather-proof materials for deck displays
  • Bear books for ABA Resource Library and other natural resource books (including birding, mammals & plants of MN or Midwest)

Hand Tools

  • Hand tools – hammers, wrenches, pliers, pipe wrenches, socket sets
  • Electric tools – cordless drills, cordless saws, corded tools

Power Tools

  • Quiet and powerful generators
  • Roto-Tiller
  • Lawn mowers, brushcutters, and weedeaters with replacement cord


  • Deep cycle Marine/RV batteries
  • Batteries – AA, C, D and 9 volt
  • Solar power battery chargers
  • Power inverters
  • Radio-CD/ cassette players (battery powered) for gift shop, cook shack, and food shed

Landscaping Supplies

  • Tandem axle trailer with removeable sides to haul mulch and large boxes
  • Bobcat / Skidsteer with attachments
  • Native flowers, trees, bushes especially fruiting ones
  • Clover seeds and other wildlife grasses
  • Feeding tiles 18″ x 18″ or flat rocks
  • Fertilizer / top soil / cedar mulch
  • Gravel for road improvement
  • Lumber for building projects
  • Garden tools
  • Appliance/cargo dollies, garden wagon

Wildlife Supplies

  • Gourds, coconuts, pumpkins (in shells) etc
  • Bird seed
  • Hummingbird feeders equipped with ant/bee deterrents
  • Osprey platform & duck boxes
  • Natural looking sturdy bird feeders with catch trays
  • Metal 2-cup food scoops
  • Peanuts in the shell or out
  • Apples
  • Dried fruits
  • Acorns from healthy trees
  • Seeds (preferably sunflower)
  • Walnuts, pecans, almonds, cashews, pistachios


  • One Ton flatbed truck
  • One Ton box side cargo van
  • Fuel efficient station wagon
  • Minivan
  • 4×4 ATV
  • Snowmobile
  • Engine oil, tires, wiper blades

Services Needed at the Sanctuary or ABA Office

  • Carpenters
  • Electricians
  • Camp cooks
  • Secretarial services
  • Computer experts
  • Sign makers
  • Landscapers and horticulturalists
  • Small engine mechanic
  • Alternative energy experts (solar)
  • Truckers to transport food from Cities to Sanctuary
  • Heavy equipment operators and the machinery for habitat and road improvement projects
  • Volunteer groups to gather natural foods such as acorns, hazelnuts, walnuts, hickory nuts, etc
  • Copy and printing services

Thank you!