Australia is currently facing some of the largest bush fires in the history of the country. The fires have been raging since September but have recently intensified. The BBC reported that at least 24 people have died, dozens are missing and about 1500 homes have been destroyed. So far, 13 million acres of land has been burned. To put it into perspective, that’s about the size of Leinster, Munster and most of Connacht combined. This is also an ecological disaster and so far, it is estimated that as many as 480 million animals have been killed.
At this stage, the best thing any of us can do is to donate money to those working on the ground. The following organisations need our help:
Australian Red Cross
The Red Cross support recovery programs and emergency assistance. They work in evacuation centres and recovery hubs across Australia, providing trauma and mental health supports both for victims and volunteers. Click here to donate.
Salvation Army Australia
The Salvation Army has launched a disaster appeal that uses donations to support communities in the crisis by delivering meals, clothes, and other necessities. They also work directly with the first responders who are assisting victims.
New South Wales Rural Fire Service
New South Wales is one of the worst affected areas. By donating here, you can directly help fund Rural Fire Brigades, a group that provides emergency assistance to communities directly affected by wildfires.
St. Vincent de Paul Society
The St. Vincent de Paul Society has launched a bushfire appeal. This allows you to choose what area you wish your donation to go from a variety of supports they provide such as food, clothing, shelter and medicine. Donate here.
Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
The RSPCA New South Wales’s Bushfire Appeal uses donations to help livestock, pets and wild animals that are in danger. They also treat animals that have been injured by the fires.
World Wildlife Fund
The World Wildlife Fund relies on donations to help koalas that have been affected by the fires. Donations will help with the replanting of trees and habitats for rescued Koalas and will also help protect the forests and woodlands that have not yet been burned. Donate here.
You can also choose to donate to these GoFundMe campaigns - verified by the CNN- for local animal hospitals who need help: the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital and Currumbin Wildlife Hospital. These hospitals help koalas and other animals that are in danger or injured.
A huge thanks to anyone who donates to or raises awareness around this climate disaster.