I serve on the board of the Phoenix Zoo. Yesterday at our board meeting, we saw this video produced by young grade school students from the James K. Zaharis Elementary School in Mesa, Ariz.
It’s a bit long, but please take time to watch it. I was really impressed. It provides evidence that the Phoenix Zoo, and other zoos, help children appreciate the need for protecting animal species and habitat.
We’re trying to pursue four long-term outcomes, which we call the RICE initiatives:
- Relationship to Nature. We offer the people of Arizona, particularly children and teens, the opportunity to grow in their understanding of how their lifestyles affect other species.
- Inspired Citizens. We want Arizonans and those who visit the zoo to be inspired to learn more, to act and to become “raving fans” of our organization.
- Conservation. We want to be a leader in conservation and to instill in others, particularly government and community leaders, the value of conservation. We repopulate selected species threatened by extinction and support the improvement of habitat.
- Exhibition and Collection. We exhibit animals and simulate their natural habitat, and we want to advance in our capacity to do so.
This video demonstrates that these children understood what the best zoos are trying to do, and that they were touched by the work of the zoo. Maybe it’s time for you to take a child you care about to your local zoo? Let me know what happens when you do.