Partnerships are based on trust, collaboration, and mutual visions and values. In 1988, the Edmonton Valley Zoo entered into a unique and exciting partnership. A group of Edmontonians, passionate about their local zoo, established a charity dedicated to raising awareness and funds.

Almost 30 years later, the Valley Zoo Development Society (VZDS) continues to play an important role in the revitalization of the Edmonton Valley Zoo. With two full-time and three part-time employees, and a 12-member volunteer Board of Directors, the VZDS has established itself as an integral and valuable partner.

The VZDS’s mission to raise funds and promote awareness to ensure the continued development of the Edmonton Valley Zoo is achieved through the many events and programs the VZDS runs throughout the year. The VZDS organizes annual fundraisers including ZooFest and the Zoominescence Festival of Light, facilitates the Adopt an Animal and Adopt an Exhibit programs, develops partnerships with individuals, corporate and community leaders, and operates the gift store, appropriately named the Zoo-tique.

Each year, the VZDS donates thousands of dollars to the Edmonton Valley Zoo for development and improvement. Past projects include upgrading the elephant, red panda and lemur habitats, the Zoo Veterinary Clinic, and the creation of the design plans for Nature’s Wild Backyard. The VZDS also donates funds to various charities including the International Elephant Foundation, Red Panda Network and Snow Leopard Trust.

The VZDS has committed to raising more than $9 million to fund Nature’s Wild Backyard, the next phase of the Edmonton Valley Zoo’s redevelopment.

Together, the Edmonton Valley Zoo and the Valley Zoo Development Society have exciting plans to shape attitudes about animals and the environment within Edmonton, the province and around the globe. But, we need your help!

Former Mayor of Edmonton, Stephen Mandel, and his council recognized the importance of this partnership saying: “Our council made the right decision in investing in the future of the Edmonton Valley Zoo and making it a very special place. It doesn’t always have to be just all public money; we need as private citizens to invest in the kinds of things we see are important to our city, and we should take a look at how we can support the Valley Zoo Development Society and allow them to invest in special projects at the Zoo that will make our Zoo an even better place to be.”

We invite you to partner with the Valley Zoo Development Society and play a key role in the stunning and sustainable transformation of the Edmonton Valley Zoo. Join us in creating a special place that will inspire new generations of Earth ambassadors committed to preserving our one and only planet for all life – plants, animals and humans.