(photo: BBC News)
Bushfires have been ravaging Australia for months, devastating towns, rural communities and livelihoods. Here are some ways you can help.
We found the following information at C/Net.com.
How you can help:
A number of organizations and volunteer services are aiding in the firefighting and recovery efforts for affected communities. Whether you want to help the firefighting organizations, wildlife or just provide somewhere to sleep, you can find a ton of handy links and information below:
- Australia's Red Cross Disaster relief and recovery fund helps support evacuation centers and recovery programs for the affected communities
- The NSW Rural Fire Service has a donation page to support the firefighting efforts in New South Wales
- The Country Fire Authority is the state of Victoria's rural firefighting service and you can donate directly here.
- The Country Fire Service in South Australia also takes direct donations.
- To help support firefighters in the state of Queensland, you can donate to the Rural Fire Brigades Association via their webpage.
- The Salvation Army has a disaster appeal donations page set up to deliver support to local communities affected by the blazes.
- The Victorian Bushfire Appeal is where state premier Daniel Andrews is suggesting to donate. The appeal directs money to communities in need, giving directly to those affected by the fires.
- Raise awareness! You can tweet and share and post this story -- and dozens of others -- all across the web. More eyeballs = more help.
- Foodbank is taking donations to help people in need during the crisis. You can donate at its website to the Victorian relief effort, which helps get relief for communities cut off from power and food.
- Givit is a not-for-profit organization that cares for those in need by letting you donate goods it then passes on. It accepts items or money at its donation page.
- The RSPCA bushfire appeal is used to protect the pets, livestock and wildlife affected by bushfires, helping evacuate animals from disaster zones. Items like livestock pellets and possum boxes are also incredibly handy.
- Airbnb has established an emergency housing site for those displaced by the bushfires via its Open Homes initative. You can book free accommodation in certain areas of New South Wales and Victoria.
- Similarly, Find A Bed, established by Australian writer Erin Riley, allows people to offer up a bed or locate a bed in NSW, Victoria and South Australia. It currently has 900 registered volunteers.
- The St Vincent de Paul society is helping people on the ground in rebuilding, providing food and clothing and emotional support. It has a donation page here.
- The World Wildlife Fund accepts donations to help support conservation activities, particularly related to koalas. Money can help provide emergency care during bushfires.
- Zoos Victoria have established a Bushfire Emergency Wildlife Fund which funds emergency vet assistance and "scientific intervention." You can donate to the fund here and it seems to accept PayPal and credit cards.
- The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital has already raised in excess of $2 million to help search for and protect the koalas in the region. You can donate at its GoFundMe page.
- The Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park was hit hard by the fires in South Australia. It's asking for donations to help with vet costs, koala milk and extra enclosures on its GoFundMe page.
- Another GoFundMe page has been set up as a relief fund for First Nations communities to offer "culturally sensitive, specific direct support to some of those communities with critical costs to cover expenses."
- Wires is an Australia wildlife rescue organization with a myriad ways to help Australia's native fauna. Donations can be made through its website.
- Actor and comedian Celeste Barber is running a fundraiser for the Trustee for NSW Rural Fire Service and Brigades donations fund. You can donate on the fundraiser's Facebook page.
- Comedian Nick Kroll and Aussie actor Joel Edgerton have started the hashtag #FightFireWithaFiver. They're encouraging donations to the NSW RFS of $5.
- Stranger Things actor Dacre Montgomery established his own GoFundMe on behalf of the Red Cross. The link to the GoFundMe is here.
- A useful resource if you want to buy products from rural communities is Australia's Buy From The Bush. It highlights creators and artists from regional Australia you can buy from as they face drought and now bushfire.
- There are great mental health services available to those who may need support or counselling in the crisis. Australians can chat to Lifeline online or call 13 11 14, and a similar service is provided by Beyond Blue (1300 22 46 36)
- Sign a Change.org petition calling on the NSW Government to provide adequate respiratory equipment to firefighters to protect against harmful smoke.
- GenerOZity is a charity marathon event in Australia including some of the country's biggest content creators. Creators will be livestreaming to raise funds for the fires starting Jan. 16 and the charity has a fundraiser set up with a $10,000 goal.
- GamerAid is an Australian esports and gaming community initiative which has established a GoFundMe page to donate to fire services across the country. It's also teamed up with content creation team Misfits on a merch drive with profits directed to the relief efforts.
- The No Sign of Rain print, by renowned Australian artist BossLogic, can be bought from the online store with 100% of proceeds going to the Red Cross.
- The Make It Rain fundraiser is offering up unique online auction prizes from famous Australian musicians. A concert will be held on Jan. 8 and Jan. 9 in Byron Bay.
- The Carlton Draft, a clothing store, has teamed up with former Australian Rules Football player Daniel Gorringe to raise funds via GoFundMe on behalf of the Red Cross. 100% of its profits (until Jan. 7) will go toward relief funds.
- Run your online searches through Ecosia, which uses profits to plant trees where they're needed most. Trees help reduce the carbon dioxide load. It can be added to Chrome.
- In the US, if you want to contact elected officials and make your voice heard about climate change action -- you can do that here. For Australians, you can contact a member of Parliament at this link.