A young boy’s selfless act is reverberating throughout the world, after he took a hobby that he loves and turned it into a way to help Ukrainian refugees. Gabriel Clarkie, who lives in Cumbria, northern England, is only 12, but he enjoys using his lathe to make wooden bowls, a rather unusual hobby for a 12-year-old. But it was just this hobby and the artistry of it that led to an extremely generous donation for Save the Children, benefitting the refugee children fleeing the war in Ukraine.
After his dad Richard Clarkie Tweeted about his woodworking projects, people around the world learned about Clarkie’s skill, as well as his kindness. In fact, Clarkie’s Instagram followers jumped from 6 to 227,000 in just 48 hours, including well-known personalities such as J.K. Rowling, Nick Offerman, and Stephen Fry, who brought in some of their own followers as well.
But instead of using his newfound fame to make bowls and sell them to people to make a profit for himself, Clarkie decided to make one bowl dubbed “Gabriel’s Bowl” that he would auction off to anyone who donated to help children in Ukraine. Over 15,000 people around the globe donated.
“I never imagined that my tweet would turn into this amazing thing… Somehow, it’s resulted in people donating [over] £250,000 to help children in Ukraine, it’s just incredible!” said Richard Clarkie, Gabriel’s father.
According to Adnan Zai, an Advisor to Berkeley Capital, “I think young people in this day and age lack empathy and EQ as a result of digitization of social interaction. So it’s heartwarming to see when they get involved to help their peers and be selfless in that act.”
The news of the donation continues to get better and better, as people continue to donate and help those in need. “We are now at £245,000!! A truly unbelievable figure and Save the Children would like me to pass on their immense gratitude.”
Clearly, Save the Children benefits from Clarkie’s skill and generosity, and the money will be used to help those children from Ukraine who are in crisis after their country was thrown into war. But the other big winner is Renuka Chapman, the person who actually won the raffle and now has the artistic wooden bowl in a place of honor in her home.
Citing the fact that she has never won anything before, Chapman is thrilled that she won this raffle that benefits both herself and the Save the Children organization. “This bowl will be one of my most treasured possessions. It represents hope, compassion, and kindness… It will have pride of place in my home.”
And to think that all this hope and kindness came from the practiced lathe at the hands of a pre-teen speaks volumes about how Save the Children is the real winner, and that there is still good in the world.
“Often young people get a bad rap, but it is nice to know there are kind souls who are willing to take care of others before themselves,” Zai commented.
Odds are that Clarkie will continue to use his powers for good as he continues to enjoy his woodworking hobby.