Community activism isn’t something you see every day, especially in Generation Y, a group of young people who are supposedly too self-absorbed and entitled to acknowledge anyone but themselves. However, there is a family in South Mission Beach that can proudly claim the contrary.
Since I began volunteering at the shelter, this family has single-handedly rescued at least four orphaned or injured agile wallabies. At first, I didn’t know they were all related, but soon the pattern emerged and it was clear that the same teens/pre-teens were responsible for saving so many lives.
The kids saved one young wallaby from an attacking dog, and we named her Sammi. They also prevented Montana from suffering further starvation. She was probably an orphan or had somehow been separated from the mob. Sadly, an adult wallaby they reported sustained injuries that were too severe and he was taken to the vet and euthanized.
Another wallaby lucky enough to be rescued by these Gen-Y crusaders was Sonny. His mother was hit by a vehicle and left for dead, but he managed to survive the accident. When he arrived at the shelter, he was in good health and spirits. Although still mostly furless, Sonny was very inquisitive and sweet. This was the first day Tanya attempted to toilet him outside of the pouch.
This family of siblings, with the help of their parents, have had a huge effect on the lives of many wallabies. It is without a doubt that they have saved lives that most surely would have perished had they not taken action. Perhaps I shouldn’t be as surprised as I am by these kids?
Living in a place like South Mission Beach is a far cry from the mean streets of many urban centers. Life here is very simple in comparison, and maybe this Gen-Y crowd isn’t as cynical and self-serving as those portrayed in the media, who often grow up in large metropolitan areas.
But, it is still refreshing to see youth take an active role in conservation and take part in their community. After all, they will be living in the world they inherit and it is in their best interest to contribute to a sustainable life during the present.
There is more to life than flashy new technology and the latest celebrity gossip, and it’s important that future generations tune in to what’s happening around them to save an environment that is constantly under threat and slowly disappearing.