HSI PROFILES OUR YOUNGEST SUPPORTER
Humane Society International would like to share the inspiring efforts of a small boy who at the age of four years old read about the misery of the dancing bears of India through a fund-raising HSI brochure and set out to make a difference!
Here is just a little of what his parents, Karen and Phil Wallis, have documented of Dylan's journey and his compassion for animals and their environments.
At the tender age of 3, Dylan saw a documentary about whaling that made him cry. The next day he gathered all his plastic whales and set about gathering material on the annual slaughter of whales in the name of scientific experimentation and presented it at the child care centre he attended in Brooklyn. He had all the children sign a petition and posted it to the Japanese embassy.
At four years of age, Dylan was on a family holiday when he saw HSI's brochure asking for help to stop the misery of the dancing bears of India. Dylan donated all of his holiday money and since then, he has continued to be an avid supporter of HSI, committed to raising funds to save the bears. He started with a chocolate crackle drive, then he went about distributing HSI brochures to every child at his school (over 400) and letterboxed dropped even more. As a result, many people donated to the campaign. With the support of his mum, he had badges produced of the dancing bears and sold them for a gold coin donation. Hence it is common to see kids walking around his school with a 'Save the Dancing Bears' badge on their school hats. Not surprisingly, word spread about this wonderful little boy and a local newspaper did a front page story of his efforts. HSI received quite a few donations from inspired readers.
Dylan is now 6 years of age and has many other interests such as his favourite soccer team, Manchester United. However, his mum says animals are never far from his thoughts. He owns two bearded dragons, spiny leaf insects, a bird and a dog. His room is full of plastic animals and his walls are animal murals. Pride of place on his bedside is a photo of the late Steve Irwin, a Certificate of Appreciation from HSI Director, Verna Simpson and, of course, one of him and his proud dad. Dylan's parents say they have no doubt Dylan's future will involve animals and their welfare in one form or another.
There are too many tales of Dylan's commitment to animals to share here; however we are proud to let you know that since he sent in his first donation for the dancing bears in October 2008, with the unconditional support of his parents, Dylan has raised an incredible $700 and apparently is not finished yet!!