Back in 2020, in response to society’s growing awareness of social justice issues, we established an employee-driven diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion (DEAI) committee to create positive change at the Zoo and in our community.
Last year, our DEAI committee launched its first public initiative and invited our community to celebrate Pride Week and in February of this year, we celebrated Black History Month together. We are excited to bring back Pride Week this year, and hope you’ll celebrate with us!
This year, we have decided to bring back “spirit week,” a week-long celebration of our LGBTQ+ team and community members. All of our guests are invited to participate in the activities we have planned:
Sunday, June 5: Red Ribbon Day; wear red for AIDS awareness!
Monday, June 6: Crazy hair and sock day; dress up your hair or feet!
Tuesday, June 7: Zoo Spirit; dress as your favorite animal!
Wednesday, June 8: Team Spirit; go as your sports team or dress up as a group!
Thursday, June 9: PRIDE shirts; Zoo staff wears matching T-shirts and the community can dress in rainbow or however they please!
Friday, June 10: Flashback Friday; grab garb from your favorite decade!
Saturday, June 11: Rainbow Day; put on your most colorful outfit!
Visit the Zoo on Sunday, June 5, Thursday, June 9 or Saturday, June 11 to tie-dye a shirt of your own! Simply bring a T-shirt with you or purchase one at our gift shop. Then, meet us inside the Zoo to get crafty and colorful!
In addition, our gift shop will have a limited collection of PRIDE-themed items available for purchase. The artist who created this collection, Carra Sykes, is part of the LGBTQ+ community. Members get 10% off! Nourish 321 café will have themed food specials throughout the week.
Internally, the Zoo’s DEAI committee will be sending staff and volunteers weekly educational messages to provoke courageous conversations about diversity and inclusion.
The DEAI committee’s mission statement is as follows:
Brevard Zoo is dedicated to sharing the joy of nature to help wildlife and people thrive. As a cornerstone of this mission, we embrace diversity, equity, accessibility and inclusion. We believe that these qualities foster valuable talents, perspectives and personality traits that make the Zoo a stronger, more welcoming organization.
Employees, volunteers and guests of all races, religions, sexual orientations, gender identities, exceptionalities, ages and nationalities have the right to feel safe, respected and valued. We reject racism, religious discrimination, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, ageism and xenophobia. Simply stated, we will not tolerate acts of hate.
We acknowledge the complex nature of this journey, and we are committed to demonstrating continuous self-reflection, engaging in courageous conversations and devoting the resources required to create transformative change both in our Zoo and beyond.
We hope you can join in on the fun, and we look forward to hosting more DEAI celebrations in the future. Stay tuned!
Brevard Zoo is an independent, not-for-profit organization that receives no recurring government funding for our operating costs. Your generous support enables us to continue to serve our community and continue our vital animal wellness, education and conservation programs.