Social Issues

Miami zoo opens doors to fulfill wish of 8-year-old fighting cancer

Miami, Sep 4 (efe-epa).- The Miami Zoo, which is closed for the public due to Covid-19, opened its doors on Friday for the first time in months for an eight-year-old girl suffering from brain cancer.

The girl is a fan of an online series, “Zoocademy,” launched by the zoo during the pandemic with fun and educational content and activities on the world of the animal kingdom.

Jadyn Blanco, a resident of Loxahatchee in Palm Beach, Florida, has been battling brain cancer and is fond of animals, which led to her being allowed a private visit to the zoo in Miami, the largest in Florida and the fifth-biggest in the United States.

The girl arrived in a white limousine at the massive zoological park south of Miami, where the animals roam around in environments closely resembling their natural habitats.

Blanco’s visit to the zoo along with her family members was organized by the Make-A-Wish foundation, which aims to provide “life-changing hope, strength and joy to children with critical illnesses.”

According to its website, the non-profit based in Arizona has fulfilled more than 300,000 wishes of children suffering from serious ailments across the world since 1980.

Blanco sat next to a massive yellow python, fed giraffes, and was received by Ron Magill, the zoo’s communication director who conducts the audiovisual program “Zoocademy,” which offered a glimpse of the zoo and its different animals to people at their homes while the establishment is closed due to the pandemic.

One new “lesson” of the program was aired every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday until May 29.

The Miami zoo is the only sub-tropical zoological park in the continental US.

“The unique climate in South Florida allows us to care for a wide variety of animals from Asia, Australia, Africa, and the Americas representing a broad mix of species that is unlike any other zoo in the country,” according to its website.

The zoo was closed to the public from July 4 until further notice due to an executive order by the city mayor along with other “attraction-type businesses” in the Miami-Date country, said a notice on the website.

Local media reported that this was the first time that the zoological park had been opened for just one person. EFE-EPA

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