2020 has been one dumpster fire of a year, starting with the literal wildfires in Australia at the beginning of 2020 which decimated more than 18.6 million hectares of Australian land. While the fires might have been contained and extinguished, the devastation and the environmental repercussions that they’ve had will be with us for years to come.
In the spirit of wanting to do something to help, there were plenty of firefighters ready and willing to participate in this year’s Australian Firefighters Calendar.
The firefighters were eager to help, especially since the popular calendar is for charity, and this year the proceeds will be donated to many animal rescue organizations to help the wild animals who were affected by the wildfires.
It was an easy call to make, with leading firefighter Cameron Simpson of Fire Rescue New South Wales saying that he and his crew both felt the overwhelming desire to do their part after they were first-hand witnesses to the horror that the animals went through during the fires, according to UNILAD.
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He and his crew made donations to the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital to aid one of their many koalas named Anwen. Simpson said that the crew’s perspective on the importance of protecting wildlife has forever been changed.
The Director of Australian Firefighter Calendar, David Rogers, explained to UNILAD that the importance of helping wildlife with the money raised from the calendar was always a priority. He added that despite the current pandemic, the plans to make the calendar were going to go ahead as they wanted to continue to focus their efforts on helping the Australian wildlife that were affected by the devastating fires.
And assisting many of the firefighters in their photoshoots were adorable rescue animals. Even though the coronavirus pandemic made it a little more difficult for the makers of the calendar to organize rescue animal volunteers, they still managed to make it happen. And the rescue animals looked absolutely adorable as they posed with the volunteer firefighters. There were even farm animals who participated and were included in the photoshoot. Also joining the firefighters for the charity calendar shoot were some famous pet-fluencers like Jack the kangaroo or Didga the Skateboarding Cat.
These calendars, as silly as they may seem, actually really do make a huge difference for charity. The Animal Lovers Calendar from last year made enough money to purchase nearly half a year’s new equipment and supplies for the volunteer veterinary team that cares for wildlife such as koalas, wombats, kangaroos, and birds.
Dr. Michael Pyne from the Currumbin Wildlife Hospital shared how important those donations are according to UNILAD, as they often face supply shortages but the funds from the calendar actually do help save many wild animals. And the plan for the funds this year is to be put towards the construction of Australia’s first mobile wildlife emergency hospital. The other beneficiaries for this year’s calendar drive will be the Native Animal Rescue, Wildcare Inc, Safe Haven Animal Rescue, RACQ, Rural Aid, Australian Seabird Rescue, and Kids with Cancer Foundation.
For those who want to help, there are six different charity calendars to choose from. All six of them can be viewed and purchased on their website, www.australianfirefighterscalendar.com.
And there is also the Australian Firefighter Calendars Facebook page where you can find the most up-to-date announcements.
Anastasia is an American writer and journalist living in Dublin, Ireland. Her Twitter is @AnastasiaArell5.
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