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School’s out and summer is in full swing for the youth in the Philadelphia area. Summer vacation brings a variety of activities for kids and this season, local non-profit organization Dimplez 4 Dayz has an engaging few weeks in store for Philadelphia youth.
For the first time ever, The Philadelphia Zoo has partnered with Dimplez for Dayz from July 12-August 23 to bring a summer program to the youth of the city.
“This collaboration means a lot to the youth residents in Mantua. They often ride, bike, or walk past without entering or knowing the value of the Zoo being in their backyards,” says Angela Richardson, Executive Director of Dimplez 4 Dayz. “This partnership bridges the gap between access to programs, employment, and education, adding value and purpose that will last a lifetime.”
The Philadelphia Zoo is the region’s largest classroom and a gateway into the wild.
On July 12, youth from Dimplez 4 Dayz began participating in the 6-week Summer Youth Program at the Philadelphia Zoo.
The Zoo gave 20 youth from the Dimplez 4 Dayz Resource Center the opportunity to experience that classroom like never before.
Students ages 11-18 will have to opportunity to connect with animal health staff, meet with the zookeepers, learn about animal nutrition, and see behind the scenes of how the zoo operates.
They’ll learn everything from career opportunities to conservation education with both hands-on, immersive activities and workshop-style sessions.
“The Philadelphia Zoo is thrilled to partner with Dimplez 4 Dayz. They are a hard-working, compassionate group reaching out into their local community to provide safe spaces and educational programming for young adults. This is a shared vision among our two organizations and we are so excited to create this opportunity for youth in West Philadelphia. Together we can inspire the next generation of conservationists.” Bethany Housman, Director of School and Community Partnerships at the Philadelphia Zoo.
Dimplez 4 Dayz hosted a kickoff brunch on July 12 for the partnership at the Dimplez Dreamz Resource Center. After the brunch, the students made their way to the zoo, which is just a short, 15-minute walk away.
Older youth of the non-profit are given leadership opportunities by acting as mentors for the younger children and liaisons between the organizations, ensuring a safe environment for the children.
About Dimplez 4 Dayz
In 2016, 13-year-old Akayla Brown founded Dimplez 4 Dayz, a youth-led 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering the youth voice and reducing youth violence in Philadelphia by promoting the resources and programs that can enable young people to build confidence and fulfill their potential.
The meaning behind the name and our cause is supporting and encouraging individuals to smile behind adversity, turning dreams into reality.
Under the exceptional leadership of Akayla, Dimplez 4 Dayz has grown into an impactful nonprofit organization, supporting over 5,000 families in Philadelphia through various community outreach programs and partnering with other organizations to build youth programs to facilitate positive change within their families and communities.
About The Philadelphia Zoo
America’s first zoo, The Philadelphia Zoo, is recognized for its innovative animal care and unflinching dedication to nature.
Philadelphia Zoo, a zoo of firsts, has been a trailblazer ever since it first opened on July 1, 1874.
The Philadelphia Zoo is still a leader in the conservation and care of animals.
The Zoo, which is one of the most renowned zoos in the world and is home to more than 1,700 rare and endangered animals, continues to set new standards by providing award-winning animal exhibits, cutting-edge healthcare facilities, award-winning education and conservation programs, and exceptional guest services.