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For Immediate Release: 06/09/11

Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week is June 20-24

Join Ricky Gervais, Florence Henderson and other Stars in Advancing the Cause!

Born Free USA’s third annual Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week, June 20-24, is designed to encourage people to protect wild animals in their own backyards and around the globe. The official weeklong “call to action” (supported by celebrities such as Ricky Gervais) includes advice, educational tools and online activities to engage adults and children to become more aware and protective of animals in the wild.

Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week focuses on creating a national movement to stop the exploitation of wildlife and protect our planet.

According to Adam Roberts, executive vice president of Born Free USA, “Lions, tigers, bears and elephants are disappearing because of ruthless poachers. Foxes and other furbearers are barbarically killed for the sake of ‘fashion.’ Chimpanzees, tigers and other animals are victims of the unconscionable and dangerous epidemic of wild animals being confined as pets. Wild animals are cruelly forced to perform in circuses or are trapped behind zoo bars. And wild animals are slaughtered for the pot — shark fin soup, lion burgers, smoked chimpanzee meat. Wildlife is suffering and disappearing for too many incomprehensible reasons, and our planet deserves better."

"Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week — similar to Earth Day — will get people to stop, think and take action.”

From June 20 to 24, a variety of special family-friendly education materials, Wildlife Week actions and more will be available from Born Free USA throughout the week at (www.bornfreeusa.org/keepwildlifewildweek) including: Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week daily e-mail alerts with simple ideas that can make a difference; a wildlife photo contest; an online auction; celebrity thoughts about why this issue is important to them; and Web pages filled with facts, stats and other useful information.

Born Free USA will offer people dozens of ways they can make a difference during Keep Wildlife in the Wild Week. Among them are these Top 10 Actions:

  • Do not buy any wildlife products, such as sea turtle shell or elephant ivory, when you take your summer vacation to exotic destinations.
  • Enter the Born Free USA Wildlife Week Photo Contest for a chance to win prizes and have your photo posted online. Details and rules at www.bornfreeusa.org/keepwildlifewildweek.
  • Host a fundraiser with your kids to collect money for your local wildlife sanctuary or for Born Free USA’s Primate Sanctuary, home to over 500 primates. A yard sale, lemonade stand or car wash teaches kids how to be entrepreneurs for an important cause and make a real difference. Tell us your story and how much money you raised!
  • Educate yourself and your community about co-existing with wildlife in your own town. Born Free USA has free brochures offering advice and humane solutions for perceived conflicts.
  • Enjoy your own backyard wildlife by creating a bird habitat right outside your window. Wildlife appreciation starts at home.
  • Learn about the reality and danger of hidden animal traps, especially if you hike with your dog or have family pets who play outside. Trapping can cause severe injury or death to animals and people.
  • Show your support for fur free fashion on Facebook by adding Born Free USA’s Fur Free Retailer page to your list of “likes.”
  • Send 10 friends a smile today by sharing the “High Diving Monkeys” YouTube video filmed at Born Free USA’s Primate Sanctuary in Texas.
  • Commit to never shop at stores that sell live animals. Retail environment animals are treated like commodities in order for the store to realize a profit.
  • Become a Zoo Checker and help end the worst cases of suffering at zoos. Tell Born Free about the conditions for the animals at your local zoo.

Born Free USA (BFUSA) is a nationally recognized leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation. Through litigation, legislation and public education, BFUSA leads vital campaigns against animals in entertainment, exotic “pets,” trapping and fur, and destructive international wildlife trade. BFUSA’s Primate Sanctuary in Texas is home to more than 500 primates rescued from laboratories, roadside zoos and private possession. BFUSA brings to America the message of “compassionate conservation,” the vision of the United Kingdom-based Born Free Foundation, established in 1984 by Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna, stars of the iconic film “Born Free,” along with their son Will, now CEO of both organizations. BFUSA’s mission is to end suffering of wild animals in captivity, conserve threatened and endangered species, and encourage compassionate conservation globally.

More at www.bornfreeusa.org; on twitter at http://twitter.com/bornfreeusa; and facebook at http://www.facebook.com/BornFreeUSA.

Media Contact: Rodi Rosensweig, publicrelations@bornfreeusa.org, (203) 270-8929

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