Disney Donates $250K to IFAW for Disaster Relief for Pets

The International Fund for Animal Welfare announced today a $250,000 grant from the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to support IFAW’s efforts to rescue animals from disasters, and to assist IFAW and its partners to prepare their rescue personnel for emergencies.

“Disney has been a committed supporter in IFAW’s mission to make the world better for animals,” said Ian Robinson, IFAW Animal Rescue Director. “We look forward to continuing to work together and going wherever we are needed to help suffering animals.”

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Disney Friends for Change Names Inaugural Ambassadors; $750K to be Donated

Disney Friends for Change AmbassadorsDisney Friends for Change, a global initiative that inspires kids and families to take action and make a difference in their communities, today announced that Disney Channel stars Debby Ryan (“Jessie”), Bella Thorne and Zendaya (“Shake It Up”), and Ross Lynch and Laura Marano (“Austin & Ally”) will serve as Friends for Change Ambassadors, encouraging kids and families to make a lasting, positive change by helping people, communities, and the planet.

In collaboration with select non-profit organizations, Disney Friends for Change Ambassadors will lead campaigns to engage millions of kids to take action and volunteer. Each nonprofit will receive a Disney Friends for Change grant to further the reach and impact of the themed campaign. In total, $750,000 will be awarded to the following three efforts:

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Photo: White Rhino Calf Born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom

White Rino with Calf at Disney's Animal KingdomMother’s Day may be a little more memorable this year for a Disney “mom” that recently gave birth to a white rhino calf at Disney’s Animal Kingdom.

After a 16-month gestation period, Kendi delivered her fourth calf Friday, May 4. The healthy male, which has not yet been named, is the ninth white rhino born at Disney’s Animal Kingdom; his mother, 13-year-old, Kendi, was the first.

“The birth of a white rhino calf is certainly something to celebrate since the population of this species is endangered in the wild,” said Jackie Ogden, Ph.D., vice president of Animals, Science and Environment for Disney Parks. “It’s encouraging that with protection and careful management, the global population of white rhinos continues to grow.”

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Disney Donates $500,000 to National Park Foundation Programs

In celebration of National Park Week, the National Park Foundation – the official charity of America’s national parks – today received a $500,000 grant from the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to help connect kids and families to nature through America’s national parks. Disney’s investment will go specifically to the National Park Foundation’s “Ticket to Ride” and “America’s Best Idea” programs, which will help kids explore the outdoors by providing transportation to and supporting community projects at national parks around the country.

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Disneynature ‘See “Chimpanzee,” Save Chimpanzees’ Campaign Extended

Disneynature's 'Chimpanzee'Swinging into theaters April 20 with a $10.6 million opening-weekend performance, Chimpanzee proved so popular among audiences that Disneynature is extending the “See Chimpanzee, Save Chimpanzees” conservation initiative for a second week. For every moviegoer who sees Chimpanzee through May 3, 2012, Disneynature will make a donation to the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI) through the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to protect chimpanzees today and tomorrow.

“In theaters just five days, Chimpanzee has already given us a lot to celebrate,” said Alan Bergman, president, The Walt Disney Studios. “Led by a young chimpanzee named Oscar, Chimpanzee has won the hearts of audiences nationwide. It’s because of that success that we decided to extend our program with the Jane Goodall Institute.”

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Disney Cruise Line Guests Invited to Join Crew in ‘Walk for Wildlife’ Campaign

Disney Cruise Line Walk for WildlifeFor the first time, Disney Cruise Line guests will have the opportunity to join crew members onboard Disney ships and on Disney’s private island, Castaway Cay, as part of the “Walk for Wildlife” campaign. This year, Disney Cruise Line will donate $5,000 on behalf of guests and crew members to the Jane Goodall Institute (JGI), through the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund to support JGI’s chimpanzee conservation efforts.

Starting today and throughout next week, the guests and crew of all four Disney ships will have the opportunity to participate in a two-mile “Walk for Wildlife” either while visiting Castaway Cay in the Bahamas or while onboard the ship, completing six laps around the promenade deck.

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Disney’s ‘Friends for Change’ Program Expands in 2012

Roshon Fegan and Caroline Sunshine, stars of the hit Disney Channel series “Shake It Up,” will help spread the word about Disney Friends for Change program expansion, aimed to inspire kids and families to make a difference in their world by taking actions to help people, their communities and the planet. The young actors are featured in interstitials debuting Thursday, January 19 on Disney Channel. The messages invite kids to design their own service project and apply for a Disney Friends for Change Grant from Youth Service America at Disney.com/Friends to help put their ideas into action.

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Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund Provides Emergency Support for Chimpanzees

The Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund is responding immediately to needs of the Jane Goodall Institute and the Pan African Sanctuary Alliance to protect endangered chimpanzees in Africa.

The Jane Goodall Institute was awarded $5,000 for veterinary supplies to vaccinate chimpanzees and staff against a dangerous measles outbreak at the Tchimpounga Sanctuary in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Chimpanzees are highly susceptible to human diseases, and the high cost of vaccines for 146 chimpanzees and 60 staff members jeopardized the team’s ability to cope with future medical emergencies.

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Disney Friends for Change Announce Latest Round of Funding Recipients

Disney (NYSE:DIS) today announced the latest results of voting by kids on the Disney Friends for Change website. Disney Friends for Change is a multiplatform environmental initiative that helps kids help the planet. This round of voting is the first to include kids from around the world since Disney Friends for Change expanded into Latin America and Europe.

The voting is part of an overall call to action for kids to make a difference in their local communities. Registered participants make personal promises to reduce their impact on the environment by changing their everyday actions. They can also help allocate Disney’s $1 million commitment to fund environmental programs worldwide.

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Rehabbed Osprey Released Back Into Wild at Walt Disney World’s Coronado Springs Resort

Osprey release at Coronado Springs Resort. Photo courtesy Walt Disney World ResortAfter a four-month rehabilitation at the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey, an adult male osprey was recently released at Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort near the site where he was rescued earlier this summer. An eager group of Walt Disney World Cast Members and resort guests looked on as the bird took to the air for the first time since June.

The osprey was emaciated and listless when he was found on June 17. After receiving emergency care from Disney animal care experts, the raptor was transported to the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey in Maitland, Fla. for further treatment. After several months of intensive care, the bird was moved to the Center’s Magic of Flight barn to stretch his wings and complete the rehabilitation process.

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