Giant panda birthday party made possible by Covid-19

Giant panda birthday party made possible by Covid-19

By Chet Chin There are not many good things to say about the Covid-19 pandemic that hit us in early 2020 and continues to cast its shadow globally till today. But to me, there is one unexpected but positive “side effect” for the giant panda world: overseas born pandas due to be returned to China that have had their journeys delayed and postponed more than once, continue to stay in the zoos where they were born. Zoo Negara Malaysia is one such zoo with a giant panda staying on extended time due to Covid-19. Yi Yi, our second panda cub born in Malaysia, celebrated her 5th birthday recently on 14 January. According to the Malaysian giant panda loan agreement, all panda cubs born here would have to be returned to China any time after their 2nd birthday. Nuan Nuan, our firstborn panda cub, was returned to China on 14 November 2017, less than 3 months after her 2nd birthday. Yi Yi looked set to follow in big sister’s footsteps after her 2nd birthday on 14 January 2020. But Covid-19 struck very soon after, with China going into lockdown later that month, and Malaysia following in mid March. Yi Yi’s birth in January is also something of an anomaly in the world of giant pandas. Giant panda cubs are usually born between July and September each year as the giant panda breeding season happens during the spring season (in this case, the northern spring season, because Sichuan Province, home of giant pandas, is located north of the equator). Her birth in January was more aligned with the southern spring season. Lucky for us in Malaysia that she was born in January. If not, we would not have had such an international gathering for her 2nd birthday on 14 January 2020. Yi Yi’s birth in January had also caught the attention of panda fans all over the world. As the firstborn panda cub in 2018, she enjoyed the sole attention of the fans for quite a few months before other panda cubs were born that year. This led to her winning the […]

Lily Raises Over $400

Hi! My name is Lily and I love Giant Pandas! I think that they are fascinating animals and their cubs are adorable! Like so many other panda-lovers, I do not want to see them go extinct. The cause of conserving Giant Pandas in their natural habitat is very important to me. Last year, I started 7th grade. When I was tasked to create a project about a topic that I am passionate about, I jumped straight to pandas. After long hours of pondering how I would convert my love for pandas into a project, I discovered the Pennies 4 Pandas program. I set a goal of raising $350. I would try to reach my goal through two different methods of fundraising. First, I used an online platform to design and sell my own panda-themed shirts. I was so excited to see members of my community wearing my shirts and supporting the cause of protecting Giant Pandas! Thirteen weeks and 48 sales later, I had raised $270.32. But I wasn’t done yet! The second method of fundraising that I used to raise money was donation jars. I set up four donation jars in businesses across the Lehigh Valley, and returned to check on the progress of each jar once every seven to ten days. By the time my jars were taken down around the beginning of May, they had collected $185.83. In total, I raised $456.15, exceeding my goal by over $100! I had a great time raising money for Giant Pandas, and an even better time sharing my experiences with others when I presented my project at school!    

Farnham Students Giving Back

4th grade Farnham students recently held a panda themed bake sale and trinket sale to raise money for Pandas International in honor of their classmate Katie who passed away in December of 2021and loved Pandas.   Both events sold out of items and they raised over $2400 for the charity. Thank you Farnham students for helping the pandas in Katie’s memory.

Cereal Box Leads to Helping the Pandas

My kids and their cousins read about pandas on the cereal box last fall and it has spiraled into an obsession with pandas and red pandas. They decided they were going to save the pandas. They sat in front of our house with signs and people stopped and gave them money. 3 people told them they would match whatever they raised. So after 3 days, these 4 little kids ages 6-10 raised $275! They wanted some to go to the giant pandas and the rest to go to the red pandas at the St. Louis zoo.

A Special Birthday Wish

Bella Zapata’s grandparents gave her a book about pandas and ever since she’s been hooked and reading it over and over again. Pandas are the 9-year-old’s favorite animal and she loves watching YouTube videos of baby ones. For her birthday this year, instead of asking for presents, she’s turned her passion into action. Bella collected donations to go directly towards helping endangered giant pandas. “I mean truly it warms my heart for even having the thought to want to do something like this,” Bella’s mom Kalyn Zapata said. “It’s the good that we want to see in the world.” Bella partnered with Dough Mama’s Bakery to collect donations through the month of August. They had tons of customers putting money in a jar for Bella along with the bakery contributing their tips to the jar as well. All donations money raised went directly to Pandas International to protect the world’s giant pandas. Bella celebrated her 10th birthday in August and she ended up collecting and donating over $1,000! She was able to symbolically adopt a panda for a year with her donation.

Joanna Raises Donations Through Pennies 4 Pandas

My name is Joanna, I’m 8 years old and I live in South Carolina (USA).  I love pandas.  I became interested in Giant Pandas when my brother and I were watching Mei Mei in the Born in China film.  For Christmas I received a symbolic adoption of Hua Mei and I was so excited that I borrowed all of the Panda books from our local library!  I’ve learned about red pandas, too!   As I figured out how endangered giant pandas are, I wanted to do Pennies for Pandas to help.  In a couple of months we raised $56.  I used my birthday money and friends donated when they saw my Pennies for Pandas bucket.  Learning about Pandas and animals is so much fun, I like to cut out their pictures from magazines and tape them on my wall! Thank you Joanna for your help saving the giant panda.

Ezra Draws for the Pandas

My name is Ezra and I am 10 years old. I made my first donation a couple years ago around 2018. Every year starting when I was 6, I have an art card sale. I take drawings I have made and print them onto cards. Then I sell them at a craft fair. This year I made a set of cards with panda drawings and I chose to donate 50% of the sales to Pandas International.  I also chose to donate another $30 from my card sales to make it a total of $80. I am planning on doing this fundraiser for Pandas International for the rest of the years that I do the craft fair and I hope to make more money next year to support the pandas. Thank you Ezra for your continued support and help in saving the giant panda.

Ella Raises $325 for the Giant Pandas

Ella is a 10 year old that has a love of all things panda. She decided instead of a birthday party she would have a fundraiser to help pandas. She put together little bags of panda stickers and panda snacks and  raised $325 from friends and family. We did not expect  so many donations! Thank you Ella for helping to save the giant pandas.

Oceanside Elementary Girls Help the Pandas

A group of girls from Oceanside Elementary School took it upon themselves to help save Panda Bears on the weekend. The girls, who are in Mme. Lawrence’s Grade 3/4 class, were concerned when they learned that Panda Bears are endangered. They made a variety of homemade items for the sale, including clay creations, bracelets, cookies, bookmarks and lemonade. They’re goal was to raise $100, and in the end they raised $235.35 which will go to Pandas International. From left, Ayla, Raeli (a sister/helper), Juliana, Autumn and Sadie. Missing from the photo is Sophie.  

The Village School Continues Adoption of Tong Tong

Our Kindergarten has been learning about the Giant Panda. Our students learned that the giant panda is vulnerable and needs our help! Our Annual Panda Bake Sale has turned into Popcorn for Pandas. For 17 years, the Kindergarten has been adopting Tong Tong, also known as Village, through Pandas International. Each year we have raised the money for the adoption through our community project. This year thanks to the generosity of our community were were able to re-adopt Tong Tong and raise over $1,000.  Thank you Village Kindergarten for continuing to make a difference for the giant pandas!

Next Page »