Conservatory Prep Students Are “Sew” Amazing!

boy and girl at sewing machine

After the winter break, Conservatory Prep students jumped right into a philanthropic project to start the new year off right. Longtime school volunteer Beth Goldstein heard about an opportunity through The Rescue Collective to help rescue those animals affected by the wildfires in Australia and she shared her idea with Dr. Wendy Hirsch Weiner. 

According to many news reports, the fires have consumed millions of acres and it’s estimated that more than 500,000 animals have been killed in the conflagration. Without hesitation, the esteemed school founder and principal loved the idea and wanted to begin right away as she is always searching for ways to involve her students in the world around them. 

“As part of the Conservatory Prep mission, we instruct our students through the arts and experiential learning to meet the needs of our twice-exceptional students. The devastating fires in Australia gave us an opportunity to learn about the geography and environment of the region and allowed us to help the animals burned by the fires in a small way,” explained Dr. Weiner.

Joey Pouches

Cotton pouches needed to be made to provide comfortable, secure homes for animals separated from their mothers in the natural disaster. Conservatory Prep donated the 100% organic cotton fabric needed for the pouch liners with the students’ families providing fabric swatches for the outer shells. 

Goldstein, an avid sewer, was thrilled to assist the group of fourteen to seventeen-year-olds. She downloaded patterns and instructions from the Queensland non-profit organization and taught the ambitious students how to cut and sew to create the much-needed Joey pouches for the young marsupials.

“The kids came through. They asked many questions about the animals they were going to save, and they were enthusiastic and felt empowered. We made 35 pouches for the Joeys that day. I am thrilled to volunteer at a school where we can actually get projects done,” noted Goldstein.

stuffed kangaroo in pouch

“It felt like we were really helping out the animals in Australia. So many were badly injured, I saw videos online. It was really upsetting to see them caught in the fires. So, it was great that our school did this. And it wasn’t just our school, everybody was trying to help, and we were a part of that. That was pretty cool,” exclaimed Conservatory Prep Schools senior, Alex Gold.

“People are just going out in their cars and plucking frightened and injured animals out of trees, providing whatever first aid they can and bringing them to rescue centers that have sprung up all over the country,” added Dr. Weiner. “Our group is just one of hundreds in countries across the world who are doing what we can to help.”