HERE. We are thankful to everyone who wants to help, and we believe that together, we can make a difference.
A kangaroo rushing past flames in Lake Conjola, New South Wales - Matthew Abbott for The New York Times
What Is Happening With The Australian Wildfires
If you keep up with any news source, you most likely have heard about the Australian wildfires. Australia is currently fighting some of the worst bushfires in recorded history. These wildfires started in July 2019 and continue to burn to this day. Although fires are a common occurrence in Australia, especially during the dry season, this year has been the worst in decades. Researchers say this is due to a record-setting drought combined with some of the highest heats the continent has ever seen, reaching as high as 120° Fahrenheit. So far, 28 people have been reported dead and over 3,000 homes have been destroyed. Those dead from the fires include both local Australians and volunteer firefighters (local and abroad) who are tackling the fires in extremely harsh conditions. Even people who are not directly in the fire’s path are at risk. High winds have flipped vehicles, and thick smoke continues to make the air unbreathable for life. But these conditions are not only causing immense suffering for the humans of Australia, the fires have also destroyed countless homes and food supplies for native animals. The animals that live in the forests and woodlands in the fire’s path are taking more damage than anyone else. Nearly half a billion animals (yes, half a BILLION) have been impacted by these fires, with millions of those animals likely dead. Federal Environment Minister Sussan Ley predicts that at least one-third of Australia’s koala population has been lost.
Residents defend a property from a bushfire at Hillsville near Taree, 350km (217miles) north of Sydney on November 12, 2019 - Peter Parks/AFP
According to a study done by the University of Sydney, the total number of animals impacted may not even begin to sum up the damage done. Of the 480 million animals predicted to be affected by the fires, that does not include bats, amphibians, or insects. So, the actual total number of animals affected is likely to be much higher. The fires are also not likely to stop anytime soon because Australia’s dry season can last until late February. These fires are destroying so much land and so many homes for both people and animals, but there are ways to give back and help.
How To Help
There are many organizations that are currently dedicated to helping the people, animals, and forests that have been destroyed. If you are not interested in purchasing a light from us, here are some other organizations you can directly donate to:
Fighting a fire in Tomerong - Matthew Abbott for The New York Times
- The Nature Conservancy Australia - Founded at its grassroots in the United States in 1951, The Nature Conservancy has grown to become one of the most effective and wide-reaching environmental organizations in the world. Thanks to more than a million members and the dedicated efforts of our diverse staff and more than 400 scientists, we impact conservation in 70 countries across six continents.
- GIVIT - We work to alleviate poverty in Australia by ensuring every community service provider has what it needs through the simple act of giving.
- WIRES - WIRES (NSW Wildlife Information, Rescue and Education Service Inc.) has been rescuing and caring for wildlife for over 30 years and is the largest wildlife rescue organization in Australia. We are passionate about supporting smaller volunteer organizations in the wildlife sector with the same mission, as well as Universities, Veterinary Associations and other leading scientific and environmental groups.
- Victorian Bushfire Relief - CFA (Country Fire Authority) is a volunteer and community-based fire and emergency services organization. We help protect 3.3 million Victorians, and more than one million homes and properties across the state.
- Southern Australia Bushfire Appeal - The South Australian government has launched the SA Bushfire Appeal to raise funds for people directly affected by bushfires in Cudlee Creek and on Kangaroo Island. Every contribution, no matter how big or small, can make a difference to those most affected by this tragedy.