Since September 2019, Australia has been battling with wildfires, which have ravaged more that 24 million acres of forest (to put things into perspective, that’s an area larger than Portugal), killing millions of animals and dozens of people, destroying thousands of homes, and is being called the country’s worst fire seasons on record.
As the country fights to stop the blazes, many have been giving their time and expertise towards either helping to manage the fires or supporting the brave firefighters. This week, the ladies of the Australian Islamic Centre (AIC) joined the efforts, driving down to cook meals for exhausted Australian firefighters.
Rashid Elhouli, who oversees online public relations for the AIC, said in an article by CNN that a group of female volunteers from the Melbourne-based organization filled five trucks with donated supplies and collected $1,500 in only 48 hours. They then drove over four hours to cook breakfast for 150 firefighters and distribute supplies to victims of the bushfires.
The women used their social media channels to get donations, collecting supplies such as water bottles, baby wipes, female hygiene products, milk, and fresh fruit. Then, after Friday prayer service, the AIC also held a fundraiser, selling plates of food to raise money for the bushfire victims. The event was originally scheduled to raise funds for their youth program but the group decided to donate it all to the bushfire appeal.
In a video posted on Facebook, Rodney Baylis, a Johnsvonville firefighter, is heard telling the group: “[I] extend the thanks from the fire affected areas […] I just been on the phone to the captain down there and he nearly broke into tears when I told him what we are bringing in for them today.”