Sixteen-year-old Abby Serfilippi has raised $5,000 for local animal havens by selling homemade crafts through her small local business, the Dust Bunnies Boutique.
continued Since the venture began, Serfilippi has raised $5,000 to be donated to local animal havens, including the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society, the Catskill Animal Sanctuary, Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary, Farm Sanctuary and the Critter Connection in Connecticut. Serfilippi raised $1,700 this year alone, with her most recent donation of $500 being presented to the Animal Protection Foundation in Scotia two weeks ago.
“We try to raise money throughout the year and then give one large donation to the organizations each year,” she said.
Serfilippi said her first service project and her work with animals have dramatically altered her life choices.
The Academy of the Holy Name student became a vegan after learning about factory farming and seeing videos of animals being abused by farm workers. She’s created her own information pamphlets about factory farms that promotes a “plant-based diet” and started a “Meatless Monday” movement at her school. Serfilippi also chooses her clothes and personal care products based on whether they were tested on or made from animals.
“Her dream is to see all animals treated with respect and kindness,” said Mary Jane Serfilippi. “Until this happens, Abby will continue to be the voice for the helpless and overlooked animals in our community.”
Serfilippi said she plans to continue her work to protect animals, but is not sure if she will one day make it her career.
“I don’t really know what I want to do when I’m older, but I’m open to suggestions,” she said.
Serfilippi said what she does know is she’s happy to have participated in that first service project in fourth grade.
“It really opened my eyes,” she said. “I wouldn’t have known about any of this stuff that goes on and I didn’t really know the true story behind the food that was on my plate. It changed my entire lifestyle.”
The Dust Bunnies Boutique can be found on Facebook.