Houses burning! Koalas and kangaroos fleeing for their life, begging for water, Australia is suffering and its time we do something
As usual, on my Sunday morning, I was scrolling through my Instagram when I came across this post from Instagrammer @Kelter123
I don’t know about you or how all of this news in Australia is affecting you but for me, it breaks my heart. I put down my phone and cried and cried. I feel so helpless. I feel like there is nothing I can do. I feel like I am way over here in America and the relief I normally could offer can’t be done like I usually do. Then what can I do!!!??? Once I stopped crying, I reposted the Instagram post on Facebook and in one of my groups. Then I decided to write this article to post here and in a couple other places online in hopes that by raising awareness and spreading the message, links and aids that people realize that it takes a village and we are all in this together.
Some of you may be callused and tell me “Why am I crying? I am not the one suffering.” You are right. I am not the one suffering. That does not mean I don’t care. Some of you may say “Australia is not my problem.” You have a right to that opinion. However, I disagree with you. I am a starfish saver. (Read the Starfish Story to understand) One person can make a difference. I have always thought that and know it to be true. I believe it even more so seeing the impact and difference Greta Thurnburg made in ONE YEAR!
I also have a different view of things because of my two recent battles with cancer (2016-2017) (2019). What if people said, ” I don’t have cancer, why should I care?” Luckily for me, they did care and helped out and brought me food and took me to chemo. I also see life differently. You hear this a lot in cancer patients. I see it all the time. We see life as more precious than we did before. I see this now. To be honest, I don’t know that I ever really thought about Australia before. I do know one thing, I know and truly care about Austalia and all the world a lot more now. I care about a lot of things more than I used to.
We are in this world together. You may think that what happens on the other side of the world does not affect us, but it does. There are two theories I believe that support this.
One is The Ripple Effect. One thing does relate to the other. Life creates a ripple and that ripple continues on. I believe this happens in our world as well. It is called the Ripple Effect.
A ripple effect is a situation in which, like ripples expanding across the water when an object is dropped into it, an effect from an initial state can be followed outwards incrementally.
I believe how we act, interact and what we do or don’t do about and for Australia matters and thus will create a positive ripple effect if we react positively.
The second is The Butterfly Effect.
In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministicnonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state. The butterfly effect is most familiar in terms of weather; it can easily be demonstrated in standard weather prediction models, for example. The climate scientists James Annan and William Connolley explain that chaos is important in the development of weather prediction methods; models are sensitive to initial conditions. They add the caveat: “Of course the existence of an unknown butterfly flapping its wings has no direct bearing on weather forecasts since it will take far too long for such a small perturbation to grow to a significant size, and we have many more immediate uncertainties to worry about. So the direct impact of this phenomenon on weather prediction is often somewhat wrong.
As I was searching around for more answers I had a hunch I was not the only one to feel this way and I happened upon this user who also felt the same way about the fires in Australia affecting us.
Wonder what the Butterfly effect of [this] will be. We all know the chaos theory butterfly effect of if a butterfly flaps its wings, well. Certainly less chaos at play with a large fire on this scale and its global impact.
Climate change affects us all and I can’t recall a year without some disaster of fire/flooding/eruptions or other weather/climate related effect of extreme that indirectly affects us all. The climate does not know about country borders, and any solution equally needs to be a borderless approach by all.
I know we have the UN, but its remit is so broad in many respects and the political bureaucracy that entails, slows and distracts from issues like this that any response is never timely or as you would expect.
Imagine if globally we didn’t have country pride and ego’s in the way when it came to dealing with such disasters. After all, whilst this is a fire in Australia, the effects will in various forms, be felt by all across the globe. Alas not as directly accountable as people like and hard to measure, but it will have an impact.
After all, if a butterfly wing flap can cause a storm across the other side of the globe – then I’d say fire the size of a small country is going to have a much larger impact and with less chaotic uncertainty about it.
The sad thing is, if the climate was a weapon owned by one country, you can bet the rest of the World would have got its act together. After all, we have NATO for dealing with a far lower threat, indeed, if firefighting had a military sized budget – there would be no fires.
(user Zenst- https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21946790)
Oddly, this is the only user I could find who thought this way or should I say who spoke openly online that I could find anyway. I agree with him imagine if we didn’t have a country ego in the way? The last paragraph really was profound to me “…if the climate was a weapon owned by one country, you can bet the rest of the World would have got its act together.”
The reality is this…there will be an impact. You can deny it, you can say it won’t affect us in America or wherever you are, but it will. One thing DOES affect the other. We are in a new year, this is a new decade, let us make a better world before we have no world left to fight for!
I gathered some information below for you from some other resources. Citations and links below…
Please find it in your heart to do something for Australia. They need you. The world needs you.
(If any group or organization wants me to write further articles or anything…please reach out to me if there is more I can do)
I was tagged by a friend for any crafters that want to help…
Do you knit, crochet or sew?
Would you be interested in making pouches, nests, wraps, onesies, sweaters, mittens & bird boxes for the animals affected by the fires in Australia?
Let me hook you up with patterns!
More patterns can be found in the files of this FB page – https://www.facebook.com/groups/arfsncrafts/
Please share & Thank you
The mailing address to send your items to us:
31 Albert Street
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.
Above information from: https://www.cnet.com/how-to/australian-fires-everything-we-know-and-how-you-can-help
This information is broke down a bit different but some of the information is the same:
How to help evacuees
- Donate to the Australian Red Cross, which is supporting thousands of people in evacuation and recovery centers across the country. Local residents can volunteer their services.
- Donate to the Salvation Army Australia, which is providing meals and support to evacuees and first responders in multiple locations.
- Extra room in your home? Offer to host people in need of emergency housing on AirBnB.
- Donate to the St. Vincent de Paul Society, which is helping evacuated families recover. The organization is providing food and clothing, helping cover bills, and donating household items to those whose homes have been destroyed.
- Donate food, funds or services to Foodbank, the largest hunger-relief charity in Australia.
- Donate to a GoFundMe dedicated to displaced First Nations Communities that need to rebuild.
- Donate food, toiletries and household items using Givit.
How to help firefighters
- Donate to the New South Wales Rural Fire Service. The service has set up specific funds for the families of volunteer firefighters who have been killed while on duty this fire season.
- Additionally, actor and comedian Celeste Barber is also hosting a fundraiser for the Trustee for NSW Rural Fire Service and Brigades donations fund.
- Donate to Victoria’s firefighting service, Country Fire Authority. The service is also managing locals who want to provide accommodation for people who have been displaced.
- The Country Fire Service in South Australia is taking direct donations.
- Donate to the Rural Fire Brigades Association to support firefighters in Queensland.
How to help wildlife
- Donate to WIRES, a wildlife rescue nonprofit that is rescuing and caring for thousands of sick, injured and orphaned native animals.
- Donate to the World Wildlife Fund Australia, which is directing its efforts towards koala conservation.
- Donate to the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital‘s GoFundMe, which has rescued and treated dozens of koalas suffering from severe burns. The hospital is using donations to install automatic drinking stations in burnt areas to help wildlife searching for water and to establish a wild koala breeding program to ensure the survival of the species.
- Donate to the RSPCA New South Wales, which is helping evacuate, rescue and treat pets and wildlife in threatened areas.
Trisha Trixie Hunter-Merrill
Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Certified Practitioner
Her mission and purpose in life is to leave a Legacy of Love, to Heal the World, to Be a Starfish Saver. Make a Difference. Create a Ripple of Positivity, Be a Good Human and Leave a Legacy of Love.
The idea is not to live forever but to leave a legacy of love that will.