TORONTO -- A six-year-old boy from Massachusetts has raised more than US$250,000 for Australian wildfire relief, making tiny clay koalas for donators.

When Owen Colley learned of the bushfires in Australia, which reportedly killed more than 1 billion animals, he wanted to help.

“He’s a huge animal lover and has been making clay characters for a while,” his mother wrote on a GoFundMe page. “(Together) we thought up the clay koala and offered it to friends and family as a ‘thank you’ for donations for bushfire-affected animals.”

In an interview with WBZ in Boston, Owen put the efforts in his own words:

“To help the animals who have been hurted by the Australian bushfires,” he said. “Because helping animals is better than watching TV.”

As of Tuesday morning, he had helped raise more than US$260,000 for Wildlife Rescue South Coast in New South Wales. His initial goal was just US$5,000. The intention was to send a clay koala to anyone who donated $50 or more and provided their address, but the response has been too overwhelming. Owen and parents adjusted their rules: anyone who donated by the end of Jan. 19 would receive a thank-you koala.

“Thank you ALL for helping a little boy do a BIG thing,” reads an update on the page. “Owen wishes he could send a clay koala to everyone in the world! We are so proud of this little boy and his kind heart.”

With files from CNN