Six-year-old Peakhurst South Public School student Julian Perros donates $620 to help save the Great Barrier Reef from Crown of Thomas Starfish devastation.
PROVING that Good Samaritans come in all sizes, six-year-old Peakhurst South Public School student Julian Perros raced home to empty his piggy bank and donate funds after learning about how Crown of Thomas Starfish (COTS) have caused widespread damage to the Great Barrier Reef.
"Julian came home from school and explained what he had learnt in class and asked if we could tell him more about it," Julian's Dad Andrew, a former diver, explained.
"We decided to take him and younger brother Leon on a trip to the Australian Museum where Julian learnt about the Lizard Island Research Station (LIRS). We watched a video about the divers injecting the COTS and Julian was impressed and said he wanted to help. I told him I was sure donations would help efforts to reduce COTS numbers."
And so began Julian's fundraising journey which saw him spread the word and raise $620 - through family, friends, school and local clubs - which he presented to LIRS Director, Dr Anne Hoggett, and marine scientist Dr Alexander Vail at a talk at the Australian Museum earlier this month.
When asked why it was so important to him, Julian said: "The coral is dying and the fish will have nowhere to live."
And what was the best thing about this experience so far? "When I met the scientists," he said. "My advice is that you can still help even if you are a kid. One day I am going to be a scientist like Alex."
Mum Tina certainly likes the sound of that: "We, of course, are going to keep encouraging Julian. We are very proud of his determination. The school included a story on Julian in their newsletter and he's had other kids coming up to him and saying, 'I saw the story about you', so he's feeling like a celebrity."