Virginia Zoo reaches $117k in donations — and a donor pledges to help double that number

Virginia Zoo in Norfolk Generic

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NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Virginia Zoo’s Emergency Operating Fund recently reached $117,000 in donations to help keep the zoo afloat.

The zoo said nearly 1,000 donors contributed to that total.

Now, a “generous donor” has agreed to match every donation since May 20 dollar-for-dollar until the zoo gets another $100,000.

“Though the Zoo is now open to 25 percent occupancy, attendance, which would normally be at its peak, is restricted out of concern for the safety of our visitors, staff, volunteers and animals. As the result of this limitation, the Zoo’s operating revenues are not at the typical levels experienced during peak season,” the zoo said Tuesday.

“Zoo Education staff are helping where other staff have been furloughed, providing guest services, such as wayfinding or sanitizing, in addition to creating content for schools and summer camp,” said Greg Bockheim, executive director of the Virginia Zoo. “It’s been spectacular to see the community – near and far – come to our aid with their generous donations. Not to mention, the staff who have gone above and beyond to enhance the Zoo virtually and in-person through a safe and fun experience,” Bockheim added.

Other donors to the Emergency Operating Fund include Capital Group, Bank of America, Wells Fargo and several other “local companies and organizations and record-breaking first-time donors.”

Visit the zoo’s emergency fund page for more information.

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