Young Citizen of the Year inspiring new wave of waste warriors
Published 21 January 2021
He’s the 11-year-old Caboolture changemaker who’s raised more than $20,000 through recycling, and now Reegan Pellowe hopes to inspire a new generation to go green as Moreton Bay’s 2021 Australia Day Young Citizen of the Year.
Over 18 months, Reegan’s collected more than 200,000 old bottles for recycling through the State Government’s Containers with Change refund scheme, and donated 100% of the money he’s earned to helping kids in need.
Mayor Peter Flannery said Reegan was a force for positive change in the community, having demonstrated maturity and responsibility well beyond his years.
“When I look at a kid like Reegan who’s already so focussed on important causes like our environment and helping people less fortunate than him, I know our future’s in safe hands,” Mayor Flannery said.
“Reegan has raised funds towards Easter hampers to the Morayfield Child Safety Service Centre, purchased back to school bags for The Breakfast Club, bought Christmas toys for kids in foster care and donated boredom bags for kids staying at the Redcliffe and Caboolture hospitals.
“He’s also collected over 3,000 bottle lids for Lids 4 Kids to be made into prosthetics for children!
“It’s through his hard work and dedication, that young Reegan has made others his age smile when they have needed it most.
“There’s no doubt that 2020 was one of the toughest years in recent history but it brought about the best in the Australian spirit, a spirt that Reegan embodies to a tee.”
Reegan Pellowe said he began his work recycling to help give all kids a fair go.
“I use 100% of the money from recycling cans and bottles to help buy medical items and other important things for kids in need,” Reegan said.
“Through my Facebook page Changing One Kids Life at a Time, people message us when they have containers to recycle, then Mum, Dad and I drive around to collect them, sometimes all night.
“Through various charities, I’ve helped kids in foster care, kids in the hospital and kids who are homeless.
“The best part is without doubt the smiles I get when I help someone.
“No matter how young or old you are, you can help make a difference.”
Councillor Adam Hain (Div 3) said Reegan had made Moreton Bay a better place to live through his conservation of the environment.
“Young Reegan is sharing the vision that a cleaner environment is possible, and we all have the ability to reduce, reuse and recycle,” Cr Hain said.
“I want to see more people in the community be the change they want to see in the world and follow in Reegan’s footsteps to protect our environment and donate to local charities.”