Meet Gabriel Clark, a 12-year-old boy hailing from Cumbria, England. Looking at his age, it might be difficult to comprehend the efforts he’s made to serve humanity. But there’s a lot more than meets the eye with this young man.
Gabriel has been in love with woodworking ever since his mother handed him his grandfather’s hammer. It takes a lot of craftsmanship and experience to create art from wood which Gabriel definitely has under his belt by now.
However, what makes Gabriel our featured story is what he did with his talents to help raise money to donate to kids suffering from the Ukrainian crisis.
The Ukrainian Crisis
Russia and Ukraine have been on sour terms with each other ever since the latter got independence from the former.
On 24 February 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin told the world that Ukraine has been providing shelter to the neo-Nazis, an allegation that Ukraine denied.
With the goal to strip Ukraine of its military power and “denazify” the country, Putin launched an open invasion.
Vladimir Putin held the narrative that he aimed to protect the people that had been the targets of the injustices of the Ukrainian government and to ensure the neutrality of Ukraine.
As of lately, despite Russia’s claim of not harming the Ukrainian civilians, there have been about 1500 civilians dead and more than 2000 injured.
A thousand others were displaced from their homes, and are short on basic facilities.
It All Started with the Help of Richard Clark, Gabriel’s Father
On March 25, Gabriel had been feeling down since he wasn’t getting any orders. At this point, he didn't have much of a following or name for himself, with his Instagram only having 6 followers.
Gabriel wanted to get himself a mountain bike with the money that he had been previously saving from the sales of his woodwork, but with no orders coming in all of it wasn’t going as he was expecting it would.
People.com reports: "His dad, Richard Clark, took to Twitter and talked about Gabriel’s passion for woodwork and how he has been saving money from the sales to buy himself a mountain bike."
He also mentioned Gabriel’s Instagram account. Shortly, the tweet went viral. Almost 200k people followed Gabriel’s Instagram handle. Sequentially, he got twenty thousand order requests for his handcrafted bowls.
Lovely twitter people - I don't know how many of you are also #instagram users but I'm looking for a wee favour. I've a 12yr old who loves woodwork. He spends hours on his lathe making bowls and creating chopping boards which he's sells to save up for a mountain bike. 1/3 pic.twitter.com/Ny60rFf1TE— Richard R Clark ???????? (@rclarkie) March 25, 2022
This young man has led to inspiring us all is that since that day. Gabriel made his newly gained popularity a way to help others. He believes that one should pass the blessings when they are bestowed.
Teresa McCann Clark, Gabriel’s Mother
Gabriel’s mother, Teresa McCann Clark (aged 53) is an artist. When talking about her little hero’s selfless and empathic behavior, she said that her son has got a “really big heart”.
She talked about how her son is so creative and possesses great craftsmanship at such a young age, according to People.
According to her, Gabriel is a very talented and creative child but what’s his best characteristic is his selflessness and big heart.
Gabriel’s Angelic Service to the Ukrainians
After gaining some media exposure and popularity, Gabriel Clark turned to his Instagram to organize a raffle to help his Ukrainian age fellows whose lives have been turned upside down during this conflict. The initiative raised money to raffle off one of the handcrafted bowls that he etched with a yellow and a blue ring in an effort to symbolize the Ukrainian Flag.
According to Gabriel, the idea to organize the raffle came as the result of the supportive response that he got for his woodcrafts.
Gabriel originally had a goal of raising around $6,500 for the Ukrainian kids. To his surprise, he has now raised almost $110,000 and he’s pretty amazed by it.
Ways You Can Contribute to the Cause
If someone this young can be passionate enough to help others, it leads us to believe that we all have an opportunity to consider doing the same.
You can play your part in this humanitarian effort in several of the following ways:
• You can follow Gabriel Clark on his Instagram account which is currently managed by her mother, Teresa Clark. You can show him support and encourage him. Here’s his Instagram handle: https://www.instagram.com/clarkie_woodwork/
• You can buy one of his bowls that he handcrafts and have a hand in the donation for the Ukrainian Crisis. Here’s the website from where you can shop his woodworks: https://www.gabrielclarkwoodwork.com/
• Lastly, you can directly donate to the cause by going to the actual fundraiser website: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/bowlforukraine
Clark, R. R. (n.d.). Richard R Clark ???????? on Twitter: "A wee thread about a young boy and the tweet that got away. Feel free to RT. Three weeks ago my youngest, Gabriel 12, came home upset. His love of woodwork was not deemed cool, nor was only having 6 followers on his ... Retrieved May 11, 2022, from https://twitter.com/rclarkie/status/1514981921411026949; Clarkie Woodwork is fundraising for Save the Children. (n.d.). JustGiving. Retrieved May 11, 2022, from https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/bowlforukraine; Herbst, D. (2022, April 15). 12-Year-Old Woodworker's Bowl Has Raised Over $109400 and Counting for Ukrainian Children. People.com. Retrieved May 11, 2022, from https://people.com/human-interest/12-year-old-woodworkers-bowl-raises-money-for-ukrainian-children/; Login • Instagram. (n.d.). Instagram. Retrieved May 11, 2022, from https://www.instagram.com/accounts/login/?next=/clarkie_woodwork/
Reneau, A. (n.d.). 12-year-old woodworker raised $200K+ for Ukraine. Upworthy. Retrieved May 11, 2022, from https://www.upworthy.com/12-year-old-woodworker-raised-over-200k-for-ukraine?rebelltitem=1#rebelltitem1; Schmidt, A. W. (2022, April 7). 12-year-old woodworker receives 'outpouring' of kindness after dad asks Twitter for support. Fox News. Retrieved May 11, 2022, from https://www.foxnews.com/lifestyle/12-year-old-woodworker-kindness-twitter