John Lewis turns down appeal to help abandoned African penguins

After the UK’s widespread affection for penguins this Christmas, Bristol Zoological Society reached out to retail giant John Lewis for help supporting their appeal of raising £20,000 to help care for the hundreds of African penguin chicks, who have been abandoned by their parents foraging for food. 

A spokeswoman for the zoo said “We did approach them at the end of last week about the possibility of some help, in the light of their Christmas advertisement. We asked if there was anything they could do, whether in terms of money, or just some support to help raise the profile of the campaign. They were perfectly polite, and wished us the best of luck, but said that they were unable to help”.

The rehabilitation centre in South Africa rescues abandoned penguin chicks every year, with numbers already at 430 for the month of November, and still growing. The project is aiming to reach £20,000 before Christmas to help with the costs of food and care for the penguin chicks that urgently require the help. The price of fish to feed the abandoned penguins has sky-rocketed this season, even more reason the project needs the help and support.

A John Lewis spokeswoman said there was an influx of charitable requests this season, but unfortunately they have already partnered with the wildlife charity WWF, which helps to protect the Antarctic habitat of Adélie penguins, adding “As I’m sure Bristol zoo explained, we passed on our apologies that we are unable to help on this occasion and wish them the best of luck with their campaign.”

To donate to the campaign, please visit: Bristol Zoological Society Penguin Appeal

Picture: Liam Quinn

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