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Schoolgirl helps save marine life

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Splash hit: kind-hearted Eloise Federer, 8, plays with Caliban at Dolphin Quest. She raised $200 for the organisation (Photograph by Sideya Dill)

Aspiring marine scientist Eloise Federer has raised $200 for Dolphin Quest and donated $260 to the Marine Mammal Centre — all by making necklaces out of recycled goods.

When the eight-year-old came to Bermuda four years ago, she had a passion for marine animals, especially seals, but since there were none on the island, she began to broaden her interests. “So she came up to Dolphin Quest and we started a relationship with her,” said Christine Mihelcic, the general manager. “In a school project, she then took it upon herself to create a sellable product — necklaces out of recycled goods — which was unannounced to us.”

“My favourite animal is a seal,” Eloise said. “Ever since I was little I thought they were so cool and so cute.

“My goal is to help save marine animals, especially seals, since I want to become a marine scientist. I decided that I should sell my necklaces and help save some marine animals.

“I then spent three hours at the Bermuda High School fair selling all these little necklaces.

“I did it until all the 100 of them were sold.”

The young student earned $500 from the fair and gave $40 to BHS, $260 to the Marine Mammal Centre and then donated the remaining $200 to the Pacific Marine Life Foundation through Dolphin Quest, which matched the funding as part of their donation policy.

Ms Mihelcic also surprised Eloise by setting up a Skype call with Gregg Levine, a veterinarian working with the foundation.

He told her about a turtle they had rescued and how her donation had helped to save the animal and support its release back into the wild.

Marine warrior: Eloise Federer, Christine Mihelcic from Dolphin Quest and Dolphin Caliban (Photograph by Sideya Dill)