As of Monday morning, ongoing bushfires have continued to devastate Australia. At least 24 people have died, many are missing, and roughly 4.9 million hectares and one thousand homes have been destroyed in New South Wales, one of the hardest-hit states. The fires have also ravaged the lands of national parks and impacted the air quality of major cities like Sydney. Here's what you can do to help.
Wildfires are typical in Australia, but severe drought and wind conditions, in addition to extreme heat, have resulted in an especially destructive outbreak of fires. Many of the firefighters are also volunteers. And with the height of summer season just beginning, it’s unlikely the conditions will improve immediately.
If you want to help those impacted by the ongoing fires, there are several ways to do so:
On behalf of three volunteer firefighters who were killed during this fire season, the New South Wales Rural Fire Service will accept donations towards their families. To donate, visit their website. A separate GoFundMe page has also been set up on behalf of their families.
The St. Vincent de Paul Society is accepting donations on behalf of evacuees. $50 will provide food for an evacuated family. $150 will assist with bills and unanticipated expenses associated with the fire.
The Salvation Army Emergency Services is currently providing meals to evacuees and frontline responders. To donate, visit their website.
For local updates, Google has a crisis-map set up for the wildfires.
This post will be updated with more information on donation options as it becomes available.