Bird Sanctuary
Photo Credit: BackaBuddy

8-year-old Romario Valentine has raised over R12,000 for his upcoming 9th birthday to help support his favourite bird sanctuary.


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Umhlanga, South Africa (21 July 2020) – At only 8 years old, Romario Valentine from Umhlanga, Durban, has dreams to become a scientist one day. He hopes to better understand and protect our natural environment.

Proving that you’re never too young to stand up for what you believe in, Romario has been an active ocean warrior for the past 2 years. He has cleaned up his local beach once a week and raises awareness around the dangers of pollution.

Through his frequent visits to the Umgeni River Bird Park, in Durban North, a 3.5-hectare reserve which is home to over 800 birds from 200 species, Romario developed a passion for birds and protecting endangered species.

As a keen artist, Romario is often seen conceptualising mathematical art drawings of his favourite feathered friends such as the Hoopoe, the Golden Pheasant, the Reeves Pheasant,  the Bee Eater and the African Grey Hornbill.

“I enjoy going to Umgeni River Bird Park because I love to see the amazing birds, the Bird Show and feeding them. There is also a beautiful waterfall.” – says Romario

Upon learning that the Umgeni River Bird Park, was under strain due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Romario nobly asked his mother, Delsha Moodley, if she could help him set up a fundraiser to support the bird park. The bird park is temporarily closed and unable to fundraise during this uncertain time.

In lieu of gifts for his 9th birthday on the 26th of July, Romario, set up a campaign on donations based crowdfunding platform, BackaBuddy to raise R15 000 to support the Umgeni River Bird Park’s “Inspire to Conserve” programme to protect endangered birds.

“I couldn’t go to the bird park for my birthday this year because of the lockdown. I asked my mother to help me raise money for the conservation programme instead of getting birthday presents. I do not want them to become extinct.” – Romario

His campaign went live on the 6th July 2020 and has thus far raised a total of R 12 213.76 with contributions from 50 donors.

Romario’s parents, Delsha Moodley and Clive Valentine couldn’t be prouder of their son for taking the initiative to protect the Umgeni reserve for future generations.

“We are honoured to have a benevolent, visionary son like Romario who loves nature and the environment at such a young age. He is a creative, sporty and vibrant child and we will continue to support him in all his endeavours,” says Delsha Moodley

With his campaign, Romario hopes to encourage other youngsters like him to get involved and save our planet.

“It is important to preserve ocean life and birds so they don’t become extinct. Only we can look after them and we need oxygen from trees to live. It is important for children to get involved with conservation to learn how to look after nature for our future.” – says Romario

Support Romario’s campaign on BackaBuddy by making a donation here:

Sources: BackaBuddy (Linked Above)
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About the Author

Tyler Leigh Vivier is a writer for Good Things Guy.

Her passion is to spread good news across South Africa with a big focus on environmental issues, animal welfare and social upliftment. Outside of Good Things Guy, she is an avid reader and lover of tea.

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