CENTERPORT, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – When Rob Schwartz saw two eagles in a nest near his backyard, he created a Facebook page to share his findings.
The Bald Eagles of Centerport New York started as a small group of eagle enthusiasts which now, three years later, includes than 12,000 photographers and fans.
“It’s taken on a whole new scenario where lots of photographers are involved and documenting the eagles every day,” said Schwartz.
The page is also filled with fans eager to catch the latest sightings. Up until recently, the page was just for fun, but now it’s also being used for good.
“We picked our favorite photos and created this calendar, and we thought maybe we’d sell a few,” said Schwartz. “In actuality, we sold out within two weeks.”
Sixteen photographers donated their shots to the calendar, and with 250 printed, the sale raised around $5,000 – but none of the photographers are pocketing the money. They’re paying it forward.
“(We’re) giving it to organizations we felt dearly, which is Boots on the Ground and WINORR which is another organization that rescues and rehabilitates animals,” said photographer Christine Carrion.
Boots on the Ground NY is a not-for-profit organization that sends care packages to troops overseas in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Turkey and more. That organization received its check over the weekend.
WINORR stands for Wildlife In Need Of Rescue And Rehabilitation, a nonprofit that does exactly what the name entails. It will receive its check on Saturday.
Members find these two causes to be just as patriotic as the subjects.
“We have something special here on Long Island and I don’t think many people understand how lucky we are to have these birds in our backyard,” said photographer Sharon Dorsey.
Since the calendar was such a success, the group plans to do it again next year, but this time, on a much larger scale.
Our series Oh My Goodness highlights people doing good deeds in their community, either big or small. Do you know someone doing good or making a difference in your community? We want to know all about them! Email OhMyGoodness@CBS.com or send us a message on Facebook. You can also use #OMGCBS on Twitter or Instagram.