WWF UK raises £1m in Australia bushfire appeal

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The charity said support from the public had been “incredible”. 

14th January 2020 by Gavin Stuart 0 Comments

WWF UK has raised an astonishing £1 million for the Australian bushfire emergency in just one week, the charity has confirmed.

Praising the British public for their “incredible” support, the appeal has also been buoyed by “significant” donations from companies and celebrities including Formula 1 driver Lewis Hamilton, Arsenal’s Hector Bellerin, Juventus’s Aaron Ramsey and retailers Pets at Home.

The money will fund WWF Australia and other local organisations working to care for wildlife affected by the fires that have devastated the Pacific nation.

More than 10 million hectares of bush and forest have already been burned, with the number continuing to climb.

At least 28 people have died in the fires, and up to one billion animals have also lost their lives. Environmental campaigners fear the fires could lead to the extinction of numerous endangered species in the region.

In the northern coastal region of New South Wales alone, around 30% of native koalas are thought to have perished.

Michael Dent, executive director of supporter income and engagement at WWF said: “This is an incredible response from the UK public and we are beyond grateful for the ongoing support.

“The £1 million raised so far will have a significant impact in providing emergency funds to care and restore homes for wildlife, support response and recovery teams and to pressure governments to strengthen laws that prevent excessive tree-clearing. 

“We’ve been left shocked by the devastation to Australia and need to continue in the fight to protect our world against the climate crisis.”

Donations to the WWF appeal can be made on the charity’s website, which also includes information about other ways to help.