06/03/2013 11:18 EDT | Updated 08/03/2013 05:12 EDT

Wildlife centre seeks donations to stay open

A wildlife centre is Abbotsford, B.C., is hoping for the public's help to keep its doors open.

Elizabeth's Wildlife Center made headlines earlier this year after it fitted a rare sandhill crane with a prosthetic leg.

- Read more about the rare bird's peg leg

But the federal government has decided not to give the centre funding for summer staff.

Spokesperson Elizabeth Melnick says it's the busiest time of the year for injured wildlife and finances are running short.

"It’s pretty grim, actually,” she said.

“A couple of weeks ago it was just one breath away from being shut down completely. We've been doing this 27 years now in Abbotsford and we service from Hope all the way to Surrey now.”

The centre helps injured wild animals and birds receive medical treatment.

Melnick says the work the students do is crucial in feeding and caring for the animals during the busy summer months.

“Fundraising is definitely hard to do in spring and summer because you're so busy taking care of these animals,” she said. “Some babies have to be fed every 15 minutes for a minimum of 14 hours a day."

Melnick is hoping members of the public will come forward with donations of food, supplies and money.