Zoofari, a campaign to give more Kiwi kids free zoo visits

Auckland-Zoo1Thousands of children across New Zealand are now in a programme that helps them to receive free conservation-based educational experiences in New Zealand.

The programme, Zoofari, focuses on giving children a special wildlife experience at New Zealand Zoos. The primary backer of the campaign is The Warehouse, who has partnered with the Jane Goodall Institute of New Zealand to help support the programme.

The main purpose is to provide Kiwi kids with the essential childhood experience of visiting their local zoo, an opportunity many wouldn’t have without Zoofari.

“There’s so much a child can gain from an educational visit to a zoo beyond the enjoyment of seeing animals.  They can learn about everything from caring for the environment, recycling and conservation, to the science of animals and nature.  It can be an experience that really helps open up the world to a child.” Said Shari French, the General Manager of Community Relations at The Warehouse in an interview with the Auckland Zoo.

In addition to the actual visit to the Zoo, the programme has provided children with pre and post-visit activities, plus a dinner/sleepover at the site.

The Warehouse Zoofari experience is certified by the Ministry of Education and the entire visit is facilitated by zoo educators in partnership with teachers to ensure integration into the school curriculum. This helps to allow more children to get involved in the programme to discover the wonderful animals and learn about local and global environmental issues.

It is hoped that providing the Zoofari to children and giving them the opportunity to participate in Dr Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots programme, young people will be inspired and empowered to change their futures for the better.