This was not the scheduled post for this week, far from it. But my country is on fire, Australia is burning and all our politicians are giving is their best wishes. It isn't good enough. They've left this disaster to fall on our shoulders and it is time for us to step up because they won't.
If you are not in the know here are some of the facts:
- There are currently 74 fires burning in New South Wales, most of which are not contained.
- In addition to that, there are another 79 fires burning in the state of Queensland.
- 850,000 hectares of land have been destroyed.
- Since Friday at least 300 homes have been destroyed.
- Three people have been confirmed dead.
- A waterbomber has crashed.
The feeling of helplessness is being felt all over the remained of Australia as we can only watch on. People are losing their homes. People are losing their whole livelihoods. People are losing their lives.
I have compiled a list of things you can do to help, please consider helping. Mateship is a universal Australian trait, it is time to show it.
- Vinnies Bushfire Appeal
With this link, you can choose to donate one time or set up to continue a monthly donation. The site will also tell you what your donation is going towards. A donation as small as $50 can provide food to a family who has been evacuated from their home, while $150 can help cover the bills and unexpected costs for a family having to rebuild their lives.
- NSW Rural Fire Service
The people on the front line need our help. These donations will go straight to the people giving up their time, putting themselves in danger to help others. With the link above you can find details on how to make a direct deposit into their bank account.
- The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital
There are current estimates that in excess of 300 koalas have been killed in these fires, they need our help as well. The hospital has set up a Go Fund Me (linked above) in order to help the costs of setting up automatic drinking stations for any surviving koalas in the areas.
- Salvation Army
Maybe one of the most accessible ways to donate- you can do so at any Woolworths checkout around Australia, why not add in some while doing your shopping? You can also click the link above or call 13 SALVOS and aid in their effort to raise $3 million.
If you don't have any spare cash but you do have some items you can donate (some can be posted, but most have to be dropped off). Common items to be donated include clothing vouchers, fuel vouchers, and bedding vouchers. They also have an option to donate with 100% of proceeds going directly to fire victims.
- The Red Cross
The Red Cross has more than 120 volunteers on the ground in 33 relief and evacuation across the states of NSW, QLD, and SA. They are providing psychological help to those affected and running a program that helps connect people with their loved ones in all the chaos.
In addition to these (and other) places to donate there are also brands and companies running competitions to raise money, others that are donating a percentage of money from sales to people affected. I have also included them below.
- Shameless Media
The girls behind the Shameless podcast- Zara McDonald and Michelle Andrews are running a fundraiser for the St Vincent De Paul society, so far they have raised over $27,000.
- Toni May
The jewellery brand designed and run by Bachelor alumni Laura Byrne has pledged to donate 100% of profits made to the New South Wales RFS for twenty-four hours.
- Keep It Cleaner
Steph Claire Smith and Laura Henshaw, the two girls that are the force of Keep It Cleaner have set up a Go Fund Me Page with all profits going to the Salvation Army. The girls have also pledged to donate an extra $1000 for every $5000.
- Steph McDonald
The creator of incredible recipes on Instagram has pledged to donate every single cent of any purchase of her e-book "Recipes for a Better Being" to the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital until Sunday. @betterbeingsteph on Instagram.
If you have any more that you know of please comment them below for others to see!