08 March 2008

Discover the challenges facing wild animals and wild habitats

Recently, we have been looking back at the history, heritage, and messages of Disney’s Animal Kingdom in anticipation of the park turning ten next month. Today I present to you the Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund’s fact sheet.


The Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund (DWCF) began a significant annual grants program in 1995 on Earth Day (April 22) for the study and protection of the world's wildlife and ecosystems. The DWCF distributed its first grants in 1996 and has since continued to provide annual awards to US nonprofit conservation organizations working alongside their peers in other countries. Many of the recipient organizations concentrate their activities on "biological hotspots" -- areas rich in plant and animal life at risk of imminent destruction. In 1998, as Disney’s Animal Kingdom Theme Park opened, the DWCF made its first grants.

DWCF Support

¤ Disney Wildlife Conservation Fund is supported by Guests who choose to add a dollar or more to purchases at Walt Disney World Resort locations.
¤ Locations include Disney’s Animal Kingdom, Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, Fort Wilderness, Disney’s Wilderness Lodge, Living Seas merchandise locations, many Disney Vacation Club Resorts and aboard Disney Cruise Line.
¤ Funds are supplemented by Disney’s Office of Worldwide Outreach ensuring more than $1 million annually for the program.
¤ To ensure that all of the guests donated money goes to wildlife conservation, Walt Disney Company covers all administrative costs.

Fund Distribution

¤ Since 1995, DWCF has distributed funds to 553 projects from 150 organizations in 105 different countries.
¤ Projects are accepted annually and are evaluated on specific criteria, including scientific methodologies, but also components to educate local communities and communications efforts with policy makers to share the findings.
¤ A “rapid response” account supports emergencies throughout the year, including cash assistance for animal welfare and wildlife organizations responding to natural and environmental disasters, including hurricanes, oil spills and tsunamis.
¤ DWCF awarded $1,401,000 in 2005 divided between North American, African, Asian, Latin American and marine projects.
¤ In April 2006 the DWCF celebrated a contribution milestone of $10 million since Disney’s Animal Kingdom opened.

Details of criteria and projects can be found at www.disneywildlifefund.com

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