Take it to the edge in defence of endangered wildlife


The endangered greater bilby once ranged over most of mainland Australia but introduced predators have confined them to the hot, dry grasslands of western Queensland. Its closest relative, the lesser bilby, is extinct.
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An Australian environmentalist has launched a fundraising initiativeEdge Pledge – that generates which unites friends to do their bit for the environment.

The founder of Edge Pledge, Sam Marwood, wanted to do something “no one else had done before”.

“We thought, what would make us do a challenge?” Marwood says.

“We pulled apart all the different challenge charities out there, asking ‘what’s good about them?’, and ‘what could be improved?’”

The answer was a challenge generator web-app, which provides users with three challenges, designed to inspire them to break out of their comfort zone. Friends and family then vote on which challenge the user should undertake, pledging money in support of their nominated activity, which can range from singing at an open mic night to bungee jumping.

Users are able to tailor their fundraising by choosing from a list of wildlife projects. For example, Australian radio presenter Ash London pledged, alongside her fellow radio host Angus O’Loughlin, to be handcuffed together for 24 hours in order to raise money to support the coral on the Great Barrier Reef.

Marwood was aware that with many of the challenge charities, it’s “really hard to figure out what to do.

“I’d rather you do something outrageous that you wouldn’t normally do. That’s when I’d give you money."

With more than 1,700 native Australian plants and animals on the brink of extinction, Marwood said it was his upbringing on a farm in central Victoria that sparked his passion for wildlife conservation.

“I loved the idea of creating habitats which create life,” Marwood says.

Money raised through Edge Pledge goes to wildlife projects run by organisations such as Conservation Volunteers Australia, with the hope of providing sustainable funding rather than duplicating their work.

“We know there are so many great environmental organisations that know what to do, it’s just that they don’t have the money to do it,” said Marwood. “We loved the idea that we could be a new source of funding for all those organisations.”

You can get involved with Edge Pledge through its website: www.edgepledge.com.

  1. https://www.edgepledge.com/about
  2. http://www.australiangeographic.com.au/topics/science-environment/2014/06/australian-endangered-species-list
  3. www.edgepledge.com
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