Unfortunately, the Australian wildfires are still ablaze burning more than 17.9 million acres across Australia’s six states and is estimated to have killed nearly half a billion of the nation’s wildlife. This tragedy has inspired both past and current pageant queens to reach out to their following on social media to not only help raise awareness, but to also raise money for organizations working to stop the wildfires and protect the wildlife.
Miss Universe 2012, Olivia Culpo, posted a selfie with her and a koala sharing her devastation toward the Australian wildfires, “It’s so devastating to see what the bushfires have done to the human and animal lives across this beautiful country.” Culpo went on to encourage her followers to donate to organizations like Red Cross Australia, Wires Wildlife Rescue and Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park. She then noted how her fans could make a difference, “If we all help, even a little bit, a huge impact can be made.”
Miss World Australia 2019, Sarah Marsckee, shared her heartbreak about her country to her followers by posting a current news video of the wildfires in action. She began the post with the words, “Our remarkable country is on fire and has been on fire for over two months.” Marsckee proceeded to thank not only the firefighters working to control the flames, but to people who opened up their homes, and to those who have donated funds and supplies as well. She went on and said, “My thoughts and prayers are with you all through this hard time.” Marsckee then shared with her followers links to organizations that they could donate to not only help the people effected by the wildfires, but also the Australian wildlife. The list included organizations like the Salvation Army, and RSPCA.
Miss Earth 2020, Nellys Pimental, shared a video to her followers explaining the environmental impact the wildfires have had on the country. “Rising temperatures due to climate change have aggravated damages.” Pimental then mentioned how the wildfires have hurt Australian wildlife. “The koala has officially entered the functionally extinct list of species.” The video ended with Pimental encouraging her following to take action and help in any way they can with the statement, “Nature relies on us.” Her post also included the links to donate to organizations such as Rural Fire Service and Port Macquire Koala Hospital.
Experts said the wildfires origin is of both natural and human causes. Australia has experienced the worst drought in decades, making it easy for wildfires to start. Climate change has also worsened the impact and destruction of the wildfires due to weather conditions becoming more extreme. At least 24 people were charged by the NSW police for deliberately starting bushfires. According to a police statement, the police have taken legal action against 183 people for fire related offenses. As of now over 2,000 firefighters are working on the ground in NSW alone with more support from the US, Canada, and New Zealand sending in more firefighters to help put out the flames.