Daniel and William were recognised by the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) with a ‘Young Campaigners’ Award on Wednesday evening.
The event was held in at Sydney’s Customs House at Circular Quay and recognised those who have gone out of their way to help animals, both wild and domestic. The ceremony was attended by many people who came from all over Asia Pacific, however it was to Daniel and William’s delight that Steve Irwin’s father, Bob Irwin, was present to receive a lifetime achievement award for his dedication to saving the environment.
As William said in their acceptance speech, “Our inspiration for starting our quest was Steve Irwin and seeing his passion for the wildlife and the environment. As our role model, his inspiration and passion continues to help us keep going no matter what obstacles lay ahead.”.
Equally surprised were their parents, Rodney & Penny, who were brought to tears when the boys surprised them by thanking them for their love and support all throughout their quest.
The tales were turned on the boys when Bob Irwin came to deliver his acceptance speech for his lifetime achievement award and said, “The amazing thing for me this evening is not just to receive this award, because I don’t think any of us here do what we do because we want to be rewarded for it, what has actually made my evening has been listening to these two boys. I think if Steve had been here with me today, he would say exactly what I am going to say, “While we have young people like Daniel and William our wildlife has a future”.
Upon hearing these words the tears of joy streamed down the boys faces.
“For the rest of the evening all you could hear were people sniffing back tears in the audience”, “It was very moving”, Rodney Clarke said.