Community Foundation Support Helps Flamingo Gardens Face Coronavirus Crisis

September 23, 2020

Support from Fundholders at the Community Foundation of Broward has helped Flamingo Gardens feed its animals and cover other expenses during the pandemic.

The character of our community is reflected in the way we treat our animals, especially during times of crisis.

So, when the coronavirus closed Flamingo Gardens for two months, we are proud to say that local philanthropists with charitable Funds at the Community Foundation of Broward stepped up to make sure hundreds of animals received the food and care they required.

Temporarily closing Flamingo Gardens to visitors halted ticket sales and sapped other revenue that the 60-acre botanical gardens and wildlife sanctuary relies on to feed more than 450 animals, tend to thousands of plants and care for its facilities.

A drop in visitors during the pandemic creates a financial strain for Flamingo Gardens, which has more than 400 animals to feed.

That’s when the Community Foundation stepped in and identified ways that our Fundholders could help this Broward treasure and its animals face the pandemic. And thanks to support from the Stella Fund and the Scott Family Fund, we were able to deploy about $20,000 in immediate support to help Flamingo Gardens through this difficult time.

The infusion of resources not only helped sustain hundreds of animals, it freed up Flamingo Gardens to focus on fundraising for long-term challenges that lie ahead during this pandemic.

Also, this critical support from the Community Foundation enabled Flamingo Gardens to pursue innovative ways to further its educational mission during the shutdown. That includes producing a video series called “Explore Outdoors While Stuck Indoors.” The videos, posted on the Flamingo Gardens' website and shared through social media, were viewed by more than 27,000 people during the quarantine. In addition, Flamingo Gardens has started new virtual field trips for Broward students. These online experiences include lessons adaptable for all grade levels, feature animal videos and include behind-the-scenes peeks at Flamingo Gardens.

“We appreciate that the Stella Fund and the Scott Family Fund at the Community Foundation of Broward were there early in the pandemic, to support us when Flamingo Gardens needed it,” said Keith Clark, Flamingo Gardens’ executive director. “The grants also allowed Flamingo Gardens time to readjust to a new virtual reality; to connect with fans online.”

This kind of support for Flamingo Gardens is just one example of the more than $3 million in crisis response the Community Foundation has provided during the pandemic – through emergency grants, grant flexibility, new collaborations and other innovative support.

And thanks to our Fundholders' commitment to their community, this is only the beginning. As the far-reaching effects of this health and economic crisis continue to unfold, the power of endowment will enable the Community Foundation to fuel the long-term solutions Broward requires – during this crisis and beyond.

Support from the Community Foundation has enabled Flamingo Gardens to pursue innovative ways to further its educational mission during the shutdown, such as online videos and virtual field trips.

Learn More

To learn how your philanthropy can help Broward during this crisis and beyond, contact Vice President of Philanthropic Services Nancy Thies at nthies@cfbroward.org or 954-761-9503.

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