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How to help the evacuees of Australia’s bushfires

Last Updated Jan 7, 2020 at 3:58 pm EDT

In this image made from video taken on Dec. 22, 2019, and provided by Oakbank Balhannah CFS, a koala drinks water from a bottle given by a firefighter in Cudlee Creek, South Australia. Around 200 wildfires were burning in four states, with New South Wales accounting for more than half of them, including 60 fires not contained. (Oakbank Balhannah CFS via AP)

Multiple bushfires have been rampant since September in Australia. These flames have seared away nearly five-million hectares, taken 24 lives and destroyed almost 2,000 homes across three states. But the hardest hit have been the wildlife with around 480 billion animals displaced or killed. Dozens of firefighters, volunteers and teams from Canada have been working to help extinguish the blaze.

Heartbreaking videos of the devastation in Australia have been surfacing all over social media, pushing people around the world to help out in every way possible.

Here’s how you can help the evacuees who were displaced:

  • The Australian Red Cross is providing emergency assistance by initiating several recovery programs in communities affected by the bushfires along with training and equipment for the volunteers. There are ways to help even without donating money, by volunteering for them. After training, volunteers are sent to fill emergency roles. Right now, roles specific to the fires are at capacity but people can still register their interest for future opportunities.

 

  • Non-profit organization Save the Children is setting up child friendly spaces in bushfire-affected regions to help cope by giving them a safe space to interact with their parents and other children. Here’s how to donate.

 

  • Donations to Salvation Army Canada and Salvation Army Australia help provide meal and support to evacuees, fire fighters and front line responders.

 

  • Port Macquarie Koala Hospital and WWF-Australia are taking donations. More than 8,000 koalas may have been killed by the fires. The funds will be used to distribute drinking water stations in areas burned by wildfire, plant the first 10,000 urgently needed trees in critical koala habitat, and could help provide emergency care and medicine for injured koalas affected by bushfires.

 

  • Givit is an Australian organization that helps match donated goods with the victims who specifically requested for them. People have asked for personal care items, meat vouchers, non-perishable pet food etc.

 

  • If you’re living in Australia you could also list your home as an emergency house using AirBnB.