Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge is the first Urban Wildlife Refuge in the Southwest and the first Refuge established under the new Urban Refuge Initiative developed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. The goal of this initiative is to connect people in urban areas with nature and conservation through environmental education, interpretation and outdoor recreation opportunities. Valle de Oro NWR has the honor and responsibility to be a model for future urban wildlife refuges nationwide.
The Friends of Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge formed before the Refuge was established to help preserve this 570 acre property adjacent to the Rio Grande in Albuquerque’s South Valley for wildlife and future generations. As the non-profit support group for the Refuge, the Friends are now supporting and assisting in the realization of the vision for Valle de Oro NWR as a restored native wildlife habitat and community resource. This includes promoting Refuge opportunities and amenities, developing and administering environmental and cultural education programs, providing volunteer support, and fundraising to support Refuge projects and facilities.