SANIBEL, Fla-- As the pandemic continues, we’re starting to see more businesses reopen, but not everyone is there just yet. The Clinic for the Rehabilitation of Wildlife is used to bringing in big groups to educate people about wildlife rehabilitation.
Due to social distancing— the animal hospital is bringing that same type of education into classrooms across the country virtually.
“Lola is our oldest ambassador we have here at CROW," said Rachel Rainbolt as she introduced me to one of the animals. "She came from Cape Coral.”
These virtual classrooms sessions allow CROW team members to continue their education outreach programs with large groups online.
“When the Visitor Education Center had to close in March, we realized we weren't going to be able to do our outreach programs," said Executive Director Alison Hussey.
Students get to meet animal ambassadors like Mina, Gigi, Cobb, and many others during the lessons that take place through Zoom.
“What’s nice about incorporating their program with ours-- is that it helps to supplement in an engaging and exciting way," said Rainbolt.
Schools or parents can sponsor the sessions and the program fees are negotiable. So far, the wildlife stars have appeared in classrooms from Michigan to Florida giving kids a glimpse at animals they may have only seen in pictures.
“Having a screen with an animal in it is pretty exciting and it may be something they’ve never seen before," said Hussey.
Hussey also said these programs will be available over the summer and possibly even after that time period.
“This is exciting for us. I think this is something that we will continue, but we do miss our visitors and we’re looking forward to a time when we can open our doors safely. "