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Denver Zoo collects $50K in donations to help Ukraine zoos

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Posted at 11:06 AM, May 27, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-27 13:06:09-04

DENVER — The Denver Zoo has collected and distributed $50,000 in donations to help zoos in Ukraine that were impacted by Russia's war.

In March, the Denver Zoo launched a Wildlife Emergency Fund and thanks to 865 individual donations, the $50,000 was distributed to three zoos in Kyiv, Cherkassy and Odessa. The funds will support animal care and staff at these zoos, which are operating under dangerous conditions, and will help if and when transport, evacuation, and veterinary care is necessary.

The Denver Zoo will continue accepting donations, as it plans to send more funds in the future to Ukrainian zoos. Click here to donate.

“We’ve all watched in horror as this crisis has unfolded in Ukraine, and our hearts go out to the Ukrainian people who have shown incredible bravery and resilience,” said Bert Vescolani, president and CEO of Denver Zoo and a council member of World Association of Zoos and Aquariums. “Our community is so compassionate and caring, not only for Denver Zoo, but for other wildlife and conservation causes around the world. I’m inspired — but not surprised — to see such an outpouring of support for our friends in Ukraine.”

Ukrainians of Colorado, a nonprofit created to raise awareness about Ukraine in Colorado, helped the Denver Zoo build connections with leaders at the Ukraine zoos. They are also helping transfer the funds.

Kyiv Zoo Director Kyrylo Trantin said this support is much needed.

"Our main goal is to make sure that our animals do not feel that something is wrong behind the fence. They must eat well, we must serve them very well and give them our love and respect," Trantin said.