Who says one person can’t change the world? Someone who doesn’t believe that statement is a 6-year-old boy who is doing his part to help ease the devastation of the Australian wildfires. Even from thousands of miles away, this little boy is making a massive mark on helping to ease the burden from these fires, one handmade koala at a time.
Owen Colley is a kindergartener from Hingham, Massachusetts, and when he heard about the Australian fires weeks ago, he was devastated. He asked his mom if any of the animals were hurt in the fire and when she told him many animals had been affected, he knew he wanted to help. His mom, Caitlin Colley, told CNN, Owen left the room and drew a picture of a koala, dingo, and kangaroo in the rain. It was a representation of his wish for Australia, understanding that rain would bring relief. This little boy has a connection to the country, having lived there for a few months when he was a toddler.
“It was really the first time Owen had made a wish for something other than Lego or something other than himself,” Owen’s mom said. “We asked him if he wanted to help and … together we came up with this. We could make some clay koalas and give them in response to donations from friends and family.”
And that’s exactly what they did! Owen started making little clay koalas and would ask for a $50 donation for anyone who wished to take home one of the clay koalas. The idea took off, using the app Venmo, he raised $1000, his initial goal, before moving over to a GoFundMe, where his fundraiser really took off.
Owen’s fundraiser has now risen to over $140,000 and he has set a new goal of trying to raise $3 million, which sounds massive, but he’s motivated enough to do what he can to make it happen. His mom told CNN that donations are rolling in and range between $5 and $150, and those add up. Donations are still rolling in now.
“Anyone can make a difference and when we come together, we can make an even bigger difference,” Caitlin Colley said. “I just I love the idea that maybe other kids can take this to their communities and sell little clay koalas locally and raise money for this great cause.”
This family is really awesome for spending their time and resources to help! And it’s amazing proof that if you have an idea to help, no one is too small or too far away to make an impact.