Since 1997, we have partnered with Carnival Cruise Lines to implement the Carnival Kids program at selected underserved elementary schools throughout Miami-Dade County. Educating more than 3,700 fourth grade and 800 fifth grade children about animal and life science, the program is comprised of a series of outreach programs featuring live animals and biofacts (animal skins, skulls, etc…) as well as field trips to Zoo Miami and local wildlife habitats such as the Everglades National Park. For many students, Carnival Kids offers them their first opportunity to visit the Zoo as well as providing them with unforgettable opportunities to see some of the world’s most amazing and threatened wildlife, first-hand. It is our objective that participants leave the program with an increased sense of stewardship and respect for all living creatures and the environment.
Tropical American Animals & Cultural Interpretations
We received a generous grant from American Express to develop and implement “Tropical American Animals & Cultural Interpretations,” a new volunteer and staff training program at Amazon and Beyond, Zoo Miami's 27-acre, $50 million addition that opened in December 2008. The program will train docents, volunteers and staff members to become interpretive ambassadors that provide visitors with cultural information and facts on many of the creatures at Amazon and Beyond. Interpretive ambassadors will be on-site at the new exhibit beginning in summer 2009 to engage visitors in these well-rounded encounters that promote an understanding of the fragile interconnectedness between humans, wildlife and ecosystems.