Bracebridge 10-Year-Old Raises Nearly $2,000 For OSPCA Instead Of Receiving Birthday Gifts

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Birthday fundraiser: McKenna Phipps presents a cheque for $1,820 to the OSPCA Muskoka Animal Centre
McKenna Phipps presents a cheque for $1,820 to the OSPCA Muskoka Animal Centre on Oct. 31. Photo courtesy of Stacey Phipps

For three years now, Bracebridge 10-year-old McKenna Phipps has passed on the chance to receive birthday presents from friends and family, instead collecting donations to help local animals in need, and this year, she raised nearly $2,000.

McKenna Phipps wearing a shirt that says, "I raise money for animals. What's your superpower?"
McKenna Phipps. Photo courtesy of Stacey Phipps

A lifelong animal lover, McKenna started fundraising for the Bracebridge chapter of the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society (OSPCA) in 2019, aiming to help animals that haven’t found their forever homes yet. She raised $120 in cash along with collecting other donations of items from the OSPCA’s wish list, including food, litter, toys and cleaning supplies. In 2020, her efforts shifted to a virtual platform due to the pandemic and she raised $775 in donations.

“Due to COVID, we weren’t able to do a normal party, but her Aunt Christine set up an online fundraiser,” said McKenna’s mother Stacey. “This year was much the same. The online fundraiser was started and then we had two very generous friends donate signs to raffle off!” 

Between donations and the proceeds from the raffle, McKenna was able to collect $1,820 this year in honour of her birthday on Oct. 20, totalling nearly $3,000 for her three years of fundraising. She presented a cheque to the OSPCA Muskoka Animal Centre on Oct. 31.

McKenna said it makes her happy to help animals in need and she hopes to become a veterinarian someday. She plans to continue raising money for the OSPCA or other animal rescues on her future birthdays, a fact that makes her mother incredibly proud.

“It is a great feeling seeing my daughter be selfless,” Stacey said. “She has always had a big heart and would give up anything if someone else needed it. She is going to grow up to do great things!”

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