Hu­man­i­tar­ian chang­ing lives

Coast girl raises funds for oth­ers

Maroochy Weekly - - LIFE - Hi­lary Ruthven Hi­lary.Ruthven@sc­news.com.au

SINCE the age of 12 Sa­mara Wel­bourne has been highly in­volved in char­i­ta­ble work and there’s no sign she is slow­ing down.

Her help­ful na­ture started when she dis­cov­ered a love for fairy-house mak­ing at 10, and it flour­ished from there.

Sa­mara said it all be­gan when her mum would hide fairy-dolls in the gar­den.

When she found the hid­den dolls Sa­mara thought it was in­evitable they needed a house, which then even­tu­ally grew into a vil­lage.

“Well it started when I was about 10 years old and it started be­cause as a lit­tle girl my mum used to hide doll fairies in the gar­den,” she said.

“We would find them there and think oh we need to make them houses and we even­tu­ally made a vil­lage and kept mak­ing and mak­ing it turned into a hobby of mine.”

“I thought be­cause I was get­ting re­ally good at mak­ing houses I would make heaps and sell them,” she said.

It was then in year six Sa­mara saw an ad­ver­tise­ment for the Sippy Creek An­i­mal Refuge need­ing help at the shel­ter that she put her fairy house-mak­ing-skills to good use and it “just spi­ralled up from there”.

Sa­mara raised about $400 for the refuge just from sell­ing her fairy-houses at mar­kets and af­ter school with the help of her friends.

With such an in­ter­est in her houses she was con­stantly be­ing asked by strangers how she made them, then her mum sug­gested she write it all into a book.

Be­fore she knew it at the ripe age of 12 Sa­mara be­came an au­thor, re­leas­ing her first book called How to Make Fairy Houses which she de­cided to do­nate 10% of the prof­its to char­ity.

It was when she made the “life-chang­ing” move to Bali that she re­ally evolved into the hu­man­i­tar­ian she is to­day.

She said one of her close Ba­li­nese friends named Tyas lived in a very poor area, where li­braries weren’t eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble.

“She (Tyas) told me we don’t have li­braries in Bali and that’s why English skills are quite bad, and she told me how much she wanted a li­brary so I though why don’t we make one,” Sa­mara said.

So from there she be­gan rais­ing money to­wards her $20,000 goal to build a li­brary in Bun­gaya for all the chil­dren to have easy ac­cess to help and im­prove their English skills.

She said the li­brary had hopes to open at the end of May, but sadly the project had to be ex­tended be­cause not enough funds were do­nated.

“Hope­fully the open­ing will be within the next few months, I need to raise some more money for the in­ter­nal fit­tings and get some more In­done­sian books to fin­ish the li­brary,” she said.

Sa­mara said her ex­pe­ri­ence over­seas shaped her to be the per­son she is to­day, and it opened her eyes to the priv­i­leges that most take for granted in Aus­tralia.

“Well for me it was a life chang­ing ex­pe­ri­ence I think if I hadn’t moved to Bali I would a be a com­pletely dif­fer­ent per­son, com­ing from Aus­tralia and not see­ing a third world coun­try and see­ing all these priv­i­leges,” she said.

To find out more ivisit https://www.go­fundme.com /balili­brary.

PHOTO: PA­TRICK WOODS

MAK­ING A DIF­FER­ENCE: 17-year-old Sa­mara Wel­bourne turned her fairy-hobby into a ful­fill­ing ca­reer.

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