University of Oregon
Mimi Ausland has long been concerned about the wellbeing of animals and the natural world, and has made impressive efforts to help both.
When she was 11, she founded FreeKibble.com, which donated food to animal shelters—because, as she said, "Every dog and cat deserves a decent dinner." Since 2008, FreeKibble has provided an estimated $14 million in food and funding to homeless dogs and cats at shelters, rescues, and food banks across the U.S. Its work has expanded to include cat litter donations, vaccinations, and monthly causes highlighting different animals in need and the people who support them.
Mimi has moved on to start a new charity called Free the Ocean. A daily online trivia game, each time it's played one piece of plastic litter is removed from the ocean. This mutually beneficial arrangement—you learn something interesting, the Earth gets cleaned up—has proven to be popular. All ad revenue on the site goes to supporting a nonprofit partner, Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii, that organizes beach clean-ups and coastal stewardship through social media and volunteers.
Ausland is studying at the University of Oregon, in Bend, Oregon.
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