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Northern Lights recipient – Gwendolyn Raby-Payne

On October 28, she was recognized for organizing a pet food drive in her community.

Photo of Alberta Northern Lights recipient Gwendolyn Raby-Payne

Location: New Sarepta, Alberta

When 7-year-old Gwendolyn Raby-Payne of New Sarepta learned that the flow of donations to local animal welfare organizations had slowed to a trickle because of the pandemic, she decided something needed to be done. So, like any dedicated Beaver Scout, she got busy. The Scouts program requires youth to engage in community service projects, so Gwen decided her project would be a pet food drive. With some help from Mom, Gwen started an online campaign to solicit donations of pet food products and even enlisted the help of radio station CFCW to get the word out.

Once the request from this youthful, eager Beaver reached the public, the dam broke and Gwen had soon accumulated not only contributions of kibble, but also $300 in cash, which she promptly delivered to the Camrose and Area Animal Shelter and the For All Animals Rescue Society. Driven by the same initiative and ingenuity that are the hallmarks of Canada’s national animal, Gwen has shown that when there is a need in the community, you can always leave it to a beaver.

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