14-year-old YouTuber crowdfunds to feed strays amidst pandemic

Hyderabad: Mishkkaa is a 14-year-old YouTuber and is studying in ninth class at a school in Hyderabad. In 2016, she started a YouTube channel with the title Mishkkaa – The Billi of Hollywood. She posts videos about various social issues like bullying, good touch bad touch, road safety and superstitions, honesty, LGBTQIA community and etc. She also hosts talk shows. Mishkkaa’s father Viiveck Varma is the founder of Upsurge Global and Senior Advisor at Telangana State Innovation Cell. Her mother Ekta Viiveck Varma is the founder of Invisible Scars, a support group to help individuals facing domestic abuse. 

Her father Viiveck Varma says, “Mishkkaa has grown up watching her parents work for social causes, and I am beyond glad she has been inspired by it. She likes to speak of various issues with her peers and her audience, which comprises mainly of teenagers like her through a YouTube channel.” He further adds, “I also feel it is always better when teenagers are made aware of serious issues by their peers rather than by elders.”

Mishkkaa’s latest video is on stray dogs and how they are struggling to find food amid the pandemic. She explained why dogs are barking, crying and wailing more during COVID with an example from her gated community. While most people see this as an inconvenience, she says, “I realised that dogs are barking because they have no food, so I really felt bad as an animal lover. Many hotels are closed and individuals are not feeding dogs because of virus infection.” added Mishkkaa. 

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With an aim to support strays, she started an online fundraising campaign with Milaap titled “Strays Need Attention Too.” She collaborated with Animal Rights Activist Zabi Khan (a Padma Shri nominee, UN awardee and the Founder of “A Place To Bark”) for this online fundraiser.  With the money mobilised through this fundraiser Mishkkaa will support  “A Place To Bark” to buy food and distribute around the city. 

Apart from attending her online classes, Mishkkaa is putting her heart and soul into promoting the fundraiser. She has also supported a fundraiser before for Kerala Flood victims. Even at this tender age, she is doing a commendable job, creating awareness about important social issues and effectively using a powerful, new route to gather support from around the world. Children like Mishkkaa are a beacon of hope for the future of the country and the world.

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