About a month before Arabella's 7th birthday, after reading the latest Zoos Victoria members magazine, she declared she didn't want any presents for her birthday. Instead, she wants to raise money to save endangered animals.
After some research, she discovered there are very few Leadbeater's Possums left in the wild, and this was the animal she wanted to focus her attention on. Arabella is now on a mission to educate other kids and adults and raise money to go towards, Zoos Victoria Leadbeater's Possum Program, dedicated to saving this critically engaged species.
Arabella says "I want to help the Leadbeater's Possum because they are so fluffy and cute and I want to stop them becoming extinct, so maybe one day I can see them in the wild. They are too precious to be gone forever. By doing these fundraisers until I reach my goal, I want to educate people and encourage them to help too. There are small things you can do like recycling, using 100% recycled toilet paper, visiting the zoos and maybe doing a fundraiser like this yourself."
For Arabella's 7th birthday party she asked that instead of bringing presents, people donated what they would have spent on a gift, to this fund. Once she starts Grade 2 in February, she plans to continue her fundraising activity by asking her school to support her efforts, and her parents to help her host some other fundraisers throughout 2021 until she reaches her goal of $5,000.
ABOUT LEADBEATER'S POSSUMS
Once thought to be extinct, the Leadbeater's Possum was rediscovered in 1961. It is now the animal emblem of Victoria. It is critically endangered with the last lowland population in the North East having fewer than 40 possums. They are at very high risk of extinction.
Also known as Fairy Possums, they are small and speedy, sleeping in hollow trees during the day and feeding on insects and sweet nectar at night.
The loss of hollow-bearing trees is the possums' most significant threat. Hollows can take 150 years to develop in living trees, and old trees with suitable hollows have decreased due to logging and bushfires. The animal's vulnerability to fire makes climate change a severe danger.
The Leadbeater's Possum is a priority for Zoos Victoria with Healesville Sanctuary the only institution in the world housing Leadbeater's Possums in captivity and running a breeding program to save them.
PLEASE HELP ARABELLA AND ZOOS VICTORIA SAVE THIS PRECIOUS LITTLE CREATURE FROM EXTENSION. EVERY DOLLAR COUNTS.
- Mia Howard
- Violet Gleeson
- Sonia Ramma
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