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Compassion: A Garden for Gorillas
A Garden for Gorillas
Amelia Rinas with Mokdo, one of the gorillas she provides food for from her garden

Amelia Rinas is a high school student from Ohio who is fascinated by gorillas. During a visit to the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo, she became concerned about the diet of their three captive gorillas. So Amelia learned about the different foods gorillas like to eat and she now takes those fruits and vegetables to the gorillas at the zoo. However, the fresh produce is not from the grocery store; it is from a garden cultivated by Amelia and other members of her Roots & Shoots group! The group grows cucumbers, strawberries, tomatoes, carrots, and more. The variety of food has been enriching for the gorillas and has increased in quantity as others, upon hearing about the project, have offered vegetables from their own gardens. In fact, Amelia sometimes receives so many vegetables she cannot use them all, so before they spoil, she donates them to local food pantries. Dr. Jane is concerned about the welfare of all captive animals. She is inspired by young people like Amelia who find different ways to alleviate the boredom many captive animals endure and, when given extra resources, find a way to help others as well.

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