INNOVATION

Would You Kiss A Snake To Raise Money For Endangered Wildlife?

What about quitting social media for a month?

29/08/2016 6:11 AM AEST | Updated August 29, 2016 06:12
Edge Pledge
The Edge Pledge team of Carys Evans, Nadia Nath and Sam Marwood are dedicated to raising funds to save Australia’s threatened wildlife species.

Aussie have been challenged to face their biggest fears, from listening to Nickelback for a week to swimming with sharks, to help raise money for our endangered wildlife.

It's all part of Edge Pledge, a challenged-based app that allows you to be an 'Extinction Fighter' by nominating to face three dares.

Edge Pledge co-founder and environmental scientist Sam Marwood told The Huffington Post Australia that the dares can be anything that pushes you out of your comfort zone -- you can give up coffee for a month, wear your PJs to work, go to the opera, knit a scarf or be handcuffed to a mate for 24 hours.

If you can't choose, you can use the world-first challenge generator to help select dares for you.

"You basically nominate a threatened animal you'd like to help, choose three challenges you'd be willing to complete and your friends and family -- as well as the general public -- vote which one they want to see you do," Marwood said.

"They pledge an amount for the person to complete that dare, and the dare with the most pledges is the one they have to do. The pledged money goes to one of our 10 environment partners representing 16 threatened animals."

Marwood said you can also nominate friends to 'go to the edge' by selecting suitable dares and emailing them the challenge.

Comedian Tommy Little, ARIA-nominated singer Gossling and Underbelly and 100 Bloody Acres actress Anna McGahan have all stepped up to take part.

Little, who is afraid of heights, chose abseiling down the Gordon Dam, kissing a snake and riding a horse blindfolded as his three dares, while Gossling nominated doing a stand-up routine, releasing a rap song about extinction and recording three Nickelback covers as hers.

Alex Bonazzi, Greening Australia, Zoos Victoria and Edge Pledge
Proceeds from dare pledges goes to help save Aussie animals including the squirrel glider, Tasmanian devil, southern corroboree frog and the eastern barred bandicoot.

"I love the idea of my family, friends and fans being a part of the whole process and choosing which challenge I do for the cause," she said.

"It puts me even more on the edge. Suggestions on which Nickelback covers to attempt are very welcome!"

Australia's Threatened Species Commissioner Gregory Andrew has also got in on the act, nominating himself to get a yellow mohawk, wear a bilby suit and jog around Lake Burley Griffin or eat bugs.

Other celebrities including Rove, Tegan Higginbotham, Cal Wilson and Claire Hooper are also supporting the social enterprise by dressing as threatened Aussie wildlife for a series of hilarious Edge Pledge interviews conducted by TV and radio personality Ash London.

Marwood said the concept was a fun way to generate involvement, and funds, to save our native wildlife from extinction.

He said Australia has lost 30 mammals since European settlement and more than 1700 native Australian animals and plants are officially on the brink of extinction.

Prominent ecologist Hugh Possingham of the University of Queensland estimates it will cost at least $1 billion a year to get the balance right for wildlife and environments in Australia.

The Edge Pledge app will be live for about six weeks and will return annually.

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