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On Earth Day this past spring, Discovery+ debuted the documentary Endangered, a project that shined a light on conservationists working to protect endangered species like gorillas, clouded leopards, Indonesian songbirds, sharks, frogs, lemurs and giraffes. Ahead of its premiere, Ellen Degeneres, who narrated and executive produced the film, announced that her nonprofit The Ellen Fund would be expanding its efforts as part of a new campaign to support endangered species and the nonprofits that do so.
The campaign had lofty goals of raising $1 million and eight months later, the goal has been met. Per a confirmation obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, the Ellen Fund raised the tally thanks to the “generosity of individuals, organizations and businesses” such as the Elephant Cooperation, Discovery, the Chuck and Ernestina Kreutzkamp Foundation, Shirley Otto Estate and Re:wild. Funding will be dispersed to support the protection of seven endangered species: gorillas, clouded leopards, Indonesian songbirds, sharks, frogs, lemurs and giraffes.
“If you know me, you know I love animals. All animals. Big ones, small ones, fluffy ones, hairless. You name it, I love ‘em,” DeGeneres explains. “And I wanna do everything I can to protect them. That’s why I’m so proud that our Endangered Campaign reached its goal of raising $1 million. All this money goes to protect endangered animals — big ones, small ones, fluffy ones, hairless. You get it.”
Per Thursday’s news, the grant allotment is as follows, organized by species:
Grauer’s (Eastern Lowland) Gorillas: Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International will expand efforts to focus on gathering data to help protect the Grauer’s gorilla population in DR Congo by educating and training its staff and investing in community-centered conservation.
Clouded Leopards: Clouded Leopard Working Group will reduce threats to leopards and other wild cats in Nepal, India and Laos by supporting local conservationists and citizen-scientists.
Indonesian Songbirds: FLIGHT will support community empowerment programs around the confiscated bird release sites in Indonesia. Ecosystem Impact will support ranger patrols, monitoring, law enforcement and community engagement to protect critically endangered songbirds on the island of Simeulue.
Sharks: Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium will collaborate with Belize’s Ministry of Blue Economy and Shark Fisheries Association to provide support to former shark fisherfolk to obtain alternative vocational training, primarily either divemaster or culinary training, to enter the tourism industry.
Frogs: Drs. Jamie Voyles and Bree Rosenblum and the Amphibian Survival Alliance will train the next generation of researchers in Panama or Brazil at workshops organized and implemented in key countries where amphibian declines are ongoing and there is high interest in the scientific methods that can inform amphibian conservation efforts.
Lemurs: Impact Madagascar will support the establishment of a New Protected Area and the installation of a research and ecotourism center in northwestern Madagascar to reinforce the protection of the rare gallery forests and wetlands which are home to lemurs.
Giraffes: Giraffe Conservation Foundation will support Savannah Landscape Ecological and Education Center in the Greater Etosha South West Landscape to better understand the movement ecology, feeding and behavior of large mammals.
Other grants: African Parks is working together to support the Zambia-based Bangwuelu Reproductive Health Program that will establish youth clubs to raise awareness about sexual and reproductive health and offer training on small business development.
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