By Nina Wu
Interested in becoming a Pambassador in Chengdu, China?
The Chengdu Panda Base, in partnership with WildAid and The Yao Ming Foundation, is now recruiting passionate panda lovers across the world to land a job working with pandas in the wild. Three Chengdu Pambassadors will be selected.
More details on how to apply are available on the Chengdu Pambassador Facebook page, where panda lovers have to "Like" Chengdu Pambassador and then start raising awareness about panda conservation and wild habitat preservation. Deadline to apply is Oct. 1.
Semi-finalists, to be chosen in late October, will then compete for a chance to travel to Chengdu for the final round. Applicants will be whittled down to 24, who will go to Washington D.C., and then 16 (four each from the U.S., U.K., Singapore and mainland China).
The competition takes place over three months.
The Pambassadors will spend a year in Chengdu, where the goal of the program this year is to reintroduce pandas into the wild. They will also be invited to participate in a "Global Panda Conservation Tour" in 2013 which includes a globe-trotting experience visiting pandas hosted in 11 countries.
"The giant panda is a unique creature, loved by people around the world and especially the Chinese," said basketball star Yao Ming. "These pandas are native to Sichuan, and it is our duty to care for them and help them thrive back in their home in the wild."
In 2010, six finalists (out of 60,000 applicants from around the globe) won the opportunity to spend one month as panda caretakers at Chengdu Panda Base in China.
The Chengdu Panda Base is a non-profit group engaged in wildlife research, captive breeding and conservation education. Today, it is home to 108 healthy panda bears.