There are less than 100,000 giraffes left in the world, and they need our help.
One Texas zoo is making the biggest play for a long-time superstar since the Lakers signed LeBron James.
Now that all remaining Toys R Us stores in the U.S. have officially closed, the San Antonio Zoo is offering the company a cheeky way to let its nostalgia-fueled brand live on.
Geoffrey the Giraffe has been the face of Toys R Us for more than half a century, but no longer. Rather than let him fade into obscurity — like the Frito Bandito or the Noid — the San Antonio Zoo offered Geoffrey the chance to become its mascot for the zoo's giraffe conservation efforts. They even put together a YouTube video making their case.
While Toys R Us is unlikely to donate the mascot to the zoo, the campaign is an adorable way to raise awareness about the real troubles facing giraffes today.
According to estimates by the Giraffe Conservation Foundation and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, there are fewer than 100,000 giraffes left in the world. This marks an alarming 40% drop in the past 30 years, stemming largely from human activity. If we don't take action, at least some giraffe species will be lost to extinction.
Every June 21, GCF organizes World Giraffe Day. This year's event centered around Operation Twiga III, an effort to relocate Nubian giraffes in Uganda for conservation purposes. While giraffes don't serve a function crucial to humans' survival (the way bees and butterflies are needed for pollination), their plight is just another example of humanity's destruction of nature's beauty. Do we really want a world without giraffes?
You can help by donating to the San Antonio Zoo's GoFundMe page or making a contribution directly to the GCF.
The zoo hopes to raise $100,000 for the GCF to aid their goals of "supporting a sustainable future where all giraffe populations and sub-species are protected and secured in the wild."
While there's no news on whether Toys R Us will allow its recently-unemployed cartoon mascot to join in the campaign, you can't really blame the zoo for shooting its shot.