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How can you help tackle Australia’s wildfires?

While locals volunteer and celebrities across the globe donate to help tackle Australia’s devastating fires, what can the rest of us do to help?

Australia is currently facing the worst bushfires in its history, following the hottest summer ever recorded.

15 million acres of land have been destroyed and over 20 people have lost their lives. In many ways it’s a frightening and dystopian glimpse at what climate change might do to our ecosystems in the coming decades – and it’s still not stopping. Politicians around the globe have described the scenes as ‘devastating’ and a ‘catastrophe’.

As scary as this all seems, though, there has been a huge international outpouring of financial support. Millions have been raised via Australian charities to assist firefighters and local services rehouse and shelter victims – and you can help too.

How are high profile people supporting efforts to tackle the fires?

Celebrities and viral fund raiser campaigns have helped boost support efforts, bringing in impressive amounts of cash. It’s all desperately needed, too, as the fires continue to rip through Australia at an unprecedented rate.

Stars such as Hugh Jackman, Margot Robbie, Selena Gomez, and many others, have all posted across their social media channels with links to donation websites to spread awareness. Hilary Duff has pledged an unknown amount of money to donate, alongside Russell Crowe who donated A$105,000 after his own home was damaged by the fires. But, really, the celebrity efforts are not the most important issue here – what’s vital is that as many of us come together to offer aid as possible. The more attention is given to this disaster the better.

What can you do to help?

Obviously it’s a bit out of the question to try and fly over to Australia and start putting on a makeshift fire fighter uniform. The best way to realistically help is to donate to causes that are currently supporting efforts to control the wildfires, and there are a fair few of them.

Here’s a bunch of links and info if you want to show financial support or charitable aid.

To donate to firefighting services directly:

• The Country Fire Authority is the official firefighting service in the Victoria state. You can donate here, with a direct link to the disaster appeal on their website.
• Rural Fire Brigades Association have a direct donation link on their website, which is used to support firefighters in the state of Queensland.
• Click here to donate to the Country Fire Service in South Australia.
• New South Wales, one of the areas hit particularly hard, has a donation page on the NSW Rural Fire Service website where you can donate directly.

To support wildlife conservation:

• The biggest one is the RSPCA bushfire appeal, which is used to evacuate pets, livestock, and wildlife from affected areas. Click here to learn more.
• The World Wildlife Fund is a great one to help finance conservation activities, especially for koalas who are facing a crisis currently in Australia. Click here to donate.
• The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital has already raised $2 million via a GoFundMe page – you can donate here.
• The Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park also has a donation page to help battle the damages caused by the fires – click here for more.
• Click here to visit the Wires website for more on how to help with Australia’s native fauna that have been damaged due to the crisis.

To donate to relief and support efforts:

• Australia’s Red Cross Disaster relief and recovery fund is used to finance evacuation centres and recovery programmes for those affected. You can donate here.
• A GoFundMe has been set up to help First Nations Communities on the East Coast. The fund raiser has almost reached its target of $500,000 – you can donate here to help hit that number.
• Foodbank is currently accepting donations as part of the Victorian relief effort. Your support will help communities without power or food.
• Givit accepts items or money as donations which are then passed on to those in need in Australia. Click here to donate.
• The Victorian Bushfire Appeal gives aid to those directly affected – donate here.
• You can contribute via the Salvation Army website, which has a disaster appeal section specifically for the Australian emergency.
• Other charities such as The St Vincent de Paul society help those on the ground to rebuild, with food banks and clothing donations. You can donate here.
• The Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal has more long-term resources and aid to help support communities after the fires. Click here to donate.

If you’re in need of more links you can also click here to view Buzzfeed’s full article on support pages. Any donation big or small will help out those in need!