At the Lemur Conservation Foundation, we must constantly think about the best ways to promote our organization and speak about our mission; to do this, we must therefore constantly consider our audience and the best ways to reach out to them. And to reach out to our audience, we have to understand what our message is.
Ultimately, at the core of our ideals is a dedication to the preservation and conservation of the primates of Madagascar; going hand-in-hand with preserving these primates, however, is the goal to protect and preserve the environment and habitats that our beloved lemurs live in out on Madagascar.
With these ideas in mind, the LCF began to consider several facts and questions, including when it comes to conservation efforts, the greatest tool any organization can have in its arsenal is a strong educational outreach. Who better to educate than the next generation?
With a goal in mind to reach out to both youth and adult populations, the LCF ultimately developed a wonderful partnership with EnviroKidz. EnviroKidz is one of the branch companies of Nature’s Path, North America’s number one organic cereal manufacturer. The Nature’s Path group has always strived to both create products that help support the environment and to support organizations like the LCF that are actively working to preserve the environment.”
As a result of mutual interests, the LCF and Nature’s Path became partners, which is good for two reasons. One, every time someone buys an EnviroKidz product, 1% of the sale is donated to support endangered species, habitat conservation and environmental education for kids worldwide (resulting in $1.4 million being raised to help the company’s partnering organizations at this time). Two, after we provide the information we want EnviroKidz to share on their product’s containers, parents and children alike can learn all about our efforts and our wonderful lemurs – just by purchasing, say, a box of cereal!
The partnership doesn’t end there; the LCF received the Nature’s Path Organic Foods’ 2010 EnviroKidz Giving Back Award. The Giving Back Program donates money to non-profit organizations, such as LCF, that support endangered species, habitat conservation and environmental education for kids. This was the second Giving Back Award LCF has received.
As a result of the partnership and the EnviroKidz Dome Project, our reserves saw the construction of several strong, cozy dome structures for our free-ranging lemurs to reside in. The domes have helped provide secure housing for free ranging lemurs in times of environmental stress. Examples of the domes’ usefulness include the facts that the domes are hurricane proof and are ‘thermo-regulated,’ providing temperature-controlled homes for our lemurs in the winter or extreme, dry summer months.
The domes have also helped mark territorial boundaries for the different groups of lemurs living in the multi-acre forests, which has increased our abilities to mimic as natural an environment as possible for our lemurs. This is important because housing the lemurs in such natural conditions is conducive to their physical and psychological well-being and also facilitates the non-invasive behavioral research conducted at the reserve.
Work like this is never possible without the support of fans, volunteers, and partners. Those of us at the LCF are extremely grateful to EnviroKidz and Nature’s Path for providing the support we needed to continue replicating such an accurate and beautiful environment for our lemurs to live in, and for the communities we work with in Madagascar.