Save the Children Announces Lassie as First Animal Ambassador, Protecting U.S. Children from Disaster

Save the Children Announces Lassie as First Animal Ambassador, Protecting U.S. Children from Disaster

American Icon Named Ambassador for Save the Children's Get Ready Get Safe initiative

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Tanya Weinberg 202.247.6610 (M)

Lassie

WESTPORT, Conn. (May 13, 2014) — Lassie, beloved American icon for generations, is taking on a new role to protect U.S. children from disaster as ambassador for Save the Children's Get Ready Get Safe initiative, the nonprofit organization announced today.

"We're thrilled that Lassie is joining the team. Who better to show children that emergency preparedness can help them feel safe, not scared?" said Kathy Spangler, Save the Children's vice president for U.S. programs. "We're excited for Lassie to offer comfort when disaster strikes and to help inspire the basic protections our nation's children still desperately need."

An estimated 6 in 10 Americans don't have a family emergency plan, and many states still fail to meet minimum standards on disaster planning at schools and child care centers. Yet devastating natural disasters and school tragedies continue to demonstrate how a child's world can be upturned in an instant.

In her first appearance as Save the Children ambassador, Lassie travels this week to the site of one such disaster – Moore, Oklahoma – where a deadly tornado ripped through homes, schools and child care centers nearly one year ago.

Lassie will visit some of the many child care centers that Save the Children helped reopen after the May 20, 2013 tornado left them damaged or destroyed. She will spend time with children and staff who followed emergency plans and miraculously survived near total destruction without serious injury.

Lassie will also visit Moore elementary schools destroyed in the tornado, where she will help lead Get Ready Get Safe "prep rally" activities that empower children and educators to advance emergency preparedness.

"Lassie is the original superhero and an American icon of safety and trust" said Michael Francis, Chief Global Brand Officer for DreamWorks Animation. "As the ambassador for Save the Children, one of the most important charities for disaster relief, Lassie is continuing her legacy for a whole new generation across the country."

Learn more about Save the Children's Get Ready Get Safe initiative at www.savethechildren.org/GetReady

Save the Children gives children in the United States and around the world a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We invest in childhood – every day, in times of crisis and for our future. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.