“My name is Joshua Railer and I am 12 years old.
Since I was a toddler I have always been interested in nature and wildlife of all shapes and sizes.
I first became truly interested in wildlife after watching Sir David Attenborough, I was inspired by his documentaries and started to draw pictures of wild animals using my oil pastels. When I get older I would like to work with endangered animals, helping to care and protect them.
I have met Steve Backshall before and his talk at one of my local theatres was amazing. I then watched a documentary with Dr Jane Goodall and it made me more determined to want to work with animals. I then decided to do more wildlife artwork and write to some of the most influential people in wildlife conservation, to see if they would sign my work in the hope of raising money for animal conservation. I have been lucky enough to have my work signed by Sir David Attenborough, Steve Backshall, Simon King, Brian May and Chris Packham.
I have managed to get my senior school to sign up for the Roots & Shoots programme and have spoken to my head teacher about meeting Dr Jane Goodall and how inspirational she is not just to me, but to the future generation of conservationists.
I have hearing problems and animals and wildlife is an escape for me as I often find being in groups and day to day chit chat difficult. Animals and the natural world make me feel calm and relaxed and exploring the outdoors makes me feel happy. Animals can’t defend and stand up for themselves, especially against the damage we humans do. When I grow up I want to be a voice for them and to make a difference.”