If you’re a longtime Brevard County resident, you’ll recall that the Zoo was built from virtually nothing. In the 1980s, a group of local leaders banded together around the vision of a world-class zoological park on Florida’s Space Coast, ultimately recruiting more than 16,000 community volunteers to build the Zoo.
Since the Zoo opened in 1994, it has become a hospital for sick and injured sea turtles, a classroom for children from underserved communities, a safe haven for endangered wildlife, a conservation hub for Indian River Lagoon restoration, a treasured recreational destination, a home for rescued bears and so much more.
Between a two-month closure this spring and a projected 50% attendance level for the remainder of the year, we anticipate losing one third of our annual income. We have had to make tough sacrifices like reducing staff hours, cutting salaries, eliminating select positions and leaving most open positions vacant.
In order to continue our critically important animal wellness, conservation and education initiatives, we need to raise $1 million between now and the end of 2020. To that end, we’ve assembled a list of ways you can help the Zoo weather this storm and preserve the progress we’ve made over the past 26 years.
Membership sales account for more than $2 million of our annual income. In addition to year-round admission, you’ll receive discounts on select food, merchandise, education programs and Zoo experiences; and 50% off admission to more than 120 zoos and aquariums nationwide (including 10 right here in Florida).
If you’d like to deepen your relationship with the Zoo, consider joining Jaguar Society for access to monthly behind-the-scenes events; unlimited bird and giraffe feedings, train rides and kayak tours; and many other perks.
Directly support the care of a Zoo resident of your choice through the Animal Guardian program. Your name will appear on a panel near your animal’s habitat, and we’ll send you updates about their life for the duration of your pledge period.
Want to provide enrichment for our animals, veterinary equipment for the Sea Turtle Healing Center or tools for our lagoon restoration projects? Check out our wish list!
The Children’s Naming Path, Tree of Joy, Remembrance Tree and soon-to-be-completed 25th-anniversary monument are the perfect places to commemorate the Zoo lover in your life. These opportunities are available at a variety of price points.
Have you heard of Amazon Smile? Once you set it up, Amazon will donate 0.5% of your purchases to a nonprofit of your choice. Click here to learn more. (Be sure to select East Coast Zoological Foundation as your beneficiary.)
Many companies will match the contributions their employees make to nonprofits. Click here to see if your employer is on the list.
You can easily help the Zoo without spending a dime. Tell your friends and family about the impact the Zoo has on the community and the challenges it’s facing, and share our social media posts.
No matter how you give, we are grateful for your support. Thank you for being a Zoo advocate!