An appeal has gone out to local businesses from The Wildheart Trust, based at Isle of Wight Zoo, to consider supporting its rescue mission for big cats and exotic animals, via sponsorship opportunities.

The charity says that corporate sponsorship and donations from local business can help   secure a long-term future for the zoo, and enable it to fulfil its ambitions for engaging people as well as providing a life-long, loving home to rescued big cats and other animal residents.

The Trust is currently seeking support to fit out new living quarters for its two most recently rescued residents – lion brothers Vigo and Kumba.  Construction firm Willmott Dixon has already donated its skills and labour to create the new building, but there are still many items needed to turn it into a fully-functioning home, fit for the two ‘lion kings’.

Businesses wishing to help can choose specific items from a list of special equipment, or make general donations that will contribute to ongoing care such as food and veterinary treatment. Items on the list range from a £50 feeding bowl and £200 extractor fan, right up to a £1,500 communal cat slide and the £18,000 annual vet bill for the big cats.

Caring for all these special creatures does not come cheap but the Trust says that with a combination of day visitors to the zoo and corporate sponsors, it can continue its priceless work.

In return for their support, companies gifting £500 or more will receive a package of benefits such as a plaque at the relevant animal’s enclosure, plus day tickets for staff or clients. There are also Bronze, Silver and Gold corporate membership packages priced at £1,000, £3,000 and £5000 respectively.  Each of these has a specially-tailored package of benefits and rewards, including sponsorship banners at the zoo, certificates, entrance tickets, VIP experiences and inclusion in publicity materials and promotional activities such as social media and PR.

Speaking about the importance of business donations, The Wildheart Trust’s CEO Veronica Chrisp said: “Corporate donations and sponsorship are great ways for local businesses to get involved with our cause and embrace the spirit of social responsibility.    From a one-person business taking on a sponsored challenge to raise money, all the way up to a large firm taking a Gold sponsorship package, every penny counts. We are incredibly grateful for any  generous gifts we receive and work hard to make sure the money makes a real difference to our cause.”

Anyone wishing to find out more about the lions’ wish list for their new home or the corporate sponsorship packages can call the zoo on 01983 403883.  Alternatively, email: