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Orana launches biggest ever fundraising campaign

Orana Wildlife Park MEDIA RELEASE – For Immediate Release

Orana launches biggest ever fundraising campaign

One quarter of a million gorilla themed envelope mailers that have been in storage for four years will see the light of day this weekend! Orana will launch a public fundraising campaign this weekend via distribution of the mailers.

The purpose of the mailer is to help generate the remaining $2M required to complete the biggest project in Orana’s history – a $6M Great Ape Centre. The habitat will house New Zealand’s first ever gorilla group and be home to orang-utans. This exciting project is due for completion in March 2015 and the orang-utans arrive about one year later!

Chief Executive, Lynn Anderson, says: “as a registered charitable trust we must separately raise 100% of the funds for all capital projects. The Great Ape Centre is an extremely ambitious project that will deliver a New Zealand first to Christchurch. Community support is vital and we need the public’s support to help us bring these magnificent animals to our City. The envelope appeal, originally planned for September 2010 but placed on hold owing to the earthquakes, will be delivered throughout Canterbury from Kaikoura to Geraldine, Methven to Akaroa and everywhere in between, including Christchurch of course.

At the time of producing the mailers, a Gorilla Habitat was planned. The quakes resulted in us putting the project on hold, but the delays enabled staff to completely revise the concept. Through extensive expert consultation our design now enables us to hold two species of Great Ape, though costs have significantly escalated!

Orana is committed to the conservation of threatened species and will join international zoo-based breeding programmes for the apes. Our initial role will be supporting the programmes by holding offspring and raising awareness on the plight of these animals. The threats to gorillas and orang-utans are primarily driven by lifestyle choices (habitat loss for coltan mining for gorillas, forest conversion for oil palm plantations for orang-utans).

Our team is absolutely committed to ensuring that Orana is part of the re-build of our wonderful region. We consider that the Great Ape Centre will be a positive addition and add significant appeal to the Canterbury region, being a New Zealand first project! A donation towards this project will enable people to see some of the world’s most impressive primates in Christchurch.”

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