Crowdfunding for bushfire koalas climbs past $1 million
23 November 2019 at 12:00 pm
The NSW Koala Hospital says it will use the extra money to set up a koala breeding sanctuary
An online fundraiser set up to help koalas devastated in the NSW bush fires has raised over $1 million, soaring past the original $25,000 target.
The Port Macquarie Koala Hospital’s campaign was set up to raise money for automatic drinking stations in burnt areas that would help koalas and other wildlife survive the fires that have ravaged bushland in the state over the past few weeks.
But in a post to the fundraiser page made on Friday, the hospital said the additional donations – which have reached just under $1.2 million – meant it could now build more drinking stations in more fire-affected regions, as well as set up a wild koala breeding program.
“Hopefully, these koalas will breed and a new population of koalas will be established for return to the wild,” a message on the GoFundMe page read.
As many as 350 koalas are believed to have died in the recent fires around Port Macquarie, and according to the campaign 75 per cent of the area burnt by the fires was prime koala habitat.
To date, 31 koalas have been brought to the hospital for treatment since the campaign began at the end of October.
The campaign is being touted as one of GoFundMe’s most successful fundraisers of all time.
In a post to the campaign page, the hospital said it had been overwhelmed by the kindness, good wishes, and support from the Australian and international community.
“All at the Koala Hospital want to thank each and every one of you who have donated. Your kind donations make a massive difference in helping us to continue to look after these amazing creatures,” the post said.