Staithes teenager springs into action to help Australian bushfire animals
A Staithes animal lover moved by the plight of wildlife affected by the raging Australian bushfires sprang into action to help.
Kayla Leslie, 13, organised a cake sale and sponsored events to raise cash for zoos to help rescue and rehabilitate animals caught up in the blazes.
Her mum Carmen said: “She’s always wanted to be a vet’s nurse or even a farmer’s wife would do her just fine.
“Unfortunately going to Australia was not going to happen, so the following morning she woke up with a plan – ‘mam I’m going to make some money for the bushfires wildlife rescue’ she said.
“I’m going to see if I can do a cake stall at school and I thought I could give up my time on Netflix and my phone at night in favour of reading books.
“I will get people to sponsor me.
“I wished her good luck and could not believe she was doing this and all by herself.
“She’s grown up overnight.
“She wrote a letter to her head about holding a cake stall at school and it brought him to tears.”
A message of support from Australia Zoo made animal lover Kayla’s day.
She’s up to £440 now with money continuing to come in – £138 of it was made on the school cake stall.
“Kayla has done this all by herself,” said Carmen.
“I’m proud of her beyond belief – she truly is a wildlife warrior.”
In its reply, Zoos Victoria sent thanks and added: “Knowing that young people like her care and are taking action gives us hope for the future.
“She sounds like an amazing young woman.”
The 13-year-old is a student at Sacred Heart School in Redcar and has music lessons in Whitby with Paul Whittaker.