A year 6 student from Bangalow Public school has been getting up to award-winning extracurricular activities and making life better for koalas and humans.
Maddy Paice from Newrybar was recently named the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) Young Campaigner of 2019.
Maddy says she has loved animals and wildlife for as long as she can remember and, for the last two years on her birthday, instead of presents, she has asked for money and donated it to the koalas. ’On my last birthday I asked for koala gum trees and planted them on my property. I prefer to give gifts than receive them.’
‘The award was presented to me by the head of IFAW which was a big privilege,’ said Maddy. ‘I got the award because, for one and a half years now, I have been raising money for the koalas.’
‘I started by setting up a stall selling some of my old stuff, cakes and busking on my flute,’ says Maddy. ‘After a while I decided to start selling eggs since I have 17 chickens. A year later and I had raised $1000 for the koalas.’
Maddy says a Christmas gift of a beeswax wraps kit added a means to make a lot more money to donate. ‘We made heaps of wraps and started giving them to our friends. We made lots more than we needed and my mum put them on Facebook to sell some for the koalas. We kept making them and started selling them at markets. After only half a year we have now donated $10,000 to the koalas, which is the reason I was given the award.’
Maddy says he dad Drew is a WIRES rescuer and she has done all the training with him. ‘I am not old enough to qualify as an official WIRES rescuer. When I grow up I would like to be a wildlife vet. I also am involved with the Northern Rivers Wildlife Hospital (NRWH),and I have donated to them as well as the koalas and have gone to all their meetings.’
It doesn’t stop there – Maddy has also been nominated for the Fred Hollows Humanity Award which will be held on October 16 in Sydney.