It may seem an unlikely pairing. . . Greater Springfield Habitat for Humanity (GSHFH) and The Zoo in Forest Park & Education Center. However these two cherished Springfield non-profits are working together. They will be improving the public grounds at the Zoo for the community to enjoy during a special volunteer event titled “Habitat Goes to the Zoo!”.
Jennifer Schimmel, Executive Director of GSHFH has this to say. “Our primary mission is to provide decent, affordable housing to families, usually human families.” she laughs. “Although this project falls outside of our typical mission, we are Springfield neighbors with the Zoo and the animals that live there need a little help with their housing as well.” Schimmel adds “GSHFH is very adept at mobilizing and managing volunteers and we are glad to be leveraging that talent on behalf of the Zoo.”
John Lewis, Executive Director of the Zoo in Forest Park says “We have spent much of this season recovering from big property damage from the storms of last year. We are so grateful that we were able to connect with Greater Springfield Habitat to put the finishing touches on many of our exhibits. Habitat volunteers will focus on painting fourteen of our wooden buildings & animal sheds which will really look great when finished.”
The date for the “Habitat Goes to the Zoo!” event is 9/22 from 8:30am to 3pm with a rain date of 9/23. If you are interested in volunteering, please visit habitatspringfield.org or call 739-5503.
The Zoo In Forest Park & Education Center is more than 80 years old and located in beautiful Forest Park in Springfield. They depend on the support of the community, memberships & educational programs to survive. They have approximately 175 animals. Over 85,000 visitors come to the zoo annually.
Greater Springfield Habitat for Humanity (GSHFH) is a housing ministry dedicated to strengthening communities by empowering low-income families to change their lives and the lives of future generations through homeownership opportunities. Habitatspringfield.org