SPCA International to support animals in Western Australia in the aftermath of catastrophic bushfires

International NGO granting $200,000 to Australian organizations helping local wildlife in vulnerable Western Australia

February 19, 2020 Global animal welfare organization SPCA International announced that it will grant $200,000 to organizations in Western Australia (WA) and Kangaroo Island helping local animals in the aftermath of the country’s devastating bushfires this season. Over a billion animals are estimated killed in the country’s recent fires, and countless young animals, including kangaroo joeys, are now orphaned. Bushfires have decimated vital habitats in Australia’s unique and iconic ecosystem, leaving wildlife with limited food and water. While this area has seen two devastating fires, in Yanchep National Park and the Stirling Range, a biodiversity hotspot, WA and its animals have received comparatively less international aid and funding than other parts of the country. Thanks to supporter donations, SPCA International is acting urgently to deploy much-needed aid to the vulnerable wildlife of Western Australia.  

SPCA International’s grant funds in WA will support:

  • Friends of Western Ground Parrot: SPCA International’s grants are sponsoring the purchase of sound equipment to help the group locate remaining Western Ground parrots, which live underground. This already critically endangered species of bird is now feared to be nearly extinct, numbering less than 150 individual animals.   
  • Wildlife Care Western Australia: SPCA International will support the purchase of two mobile water tanks and generators, and food supplies. This group covers hundreds of miles per week refilling wildlife food and water stations on an all-volunteer basis. The water trailers will also be available on loans to other charities as they experience fires in the regions they serve.
  • Bluebush Wildlife Rescue & Rehabilitation: SPCA International will support Bluebush’s care and treatment of orphaned, burned joeys. Every rescued joey must be specially rehabilitated and released back into the wild. Care will take about 18 months per animal. With Bluebush’s monitoring coverage area spanning a million acres, Bluebush currently has dozens of rescued joeys in their care and are at capacity. The grant will allow them to expand and accept more joeys by fencing a new two-acre area and will also support the cost of two much-needed water tanks.

In addition, SPCA International will also provide a grant to the RSPCA, supporting the purchase of two vehicles dedicated to responding to animal needs on the fire-affected area on Kangaroo Island, home to many endangered species, where over a third of the landscape has been burned. 

SPCA International seeks to support local organizations providing aid well after the fires’ initial aftermath, as the needs of animals – including recovery, care, and release – will continue well into the future. SPCA International’s grants will provide equipment that will help volunteers expedite the process of helping the largest numbers of animals possible. And as Australia’s fire season continues through April, animals remain vulnerable to further destruction of their habitat and food and water supply.

“It’s important to us that we continue to support local organizations in need long after the rest of the world has moved on from this crisis,” says Meredith Ayan, Executive Director of SPCA International. “We’re partnering with many small organizations with very limited resources, where our grants will go far and provide much-needed relief for animals. SPCA International will be unwavering in our support of the rescuers – so many of them brave volunteers – working tirelessly to save animals.”

SPCA International has worked with Perth-based animal welfare advocate and author Jennifer Skiff to identify viable animal charities in need in Western Australia. Skiff says, “Wildlife charities in WA are most often comprised of trained volunteers who do their best to rehabilitate and release wildlife with few resources and little money. They’re some of the unsung heroes in this state – going into the fire zone for months to provide food and water for the animals who have survived the unimaginable.”

“Working on behalf of the good people at SPCA International was an exciting and uplifting experience. During a dark crisis, where over a billion animals are dying, we were able to provide relief to some of the most compassionate people on our planet in their work to help survivors,” Skiff adds.  

To learn more about SPCA International’s work to protect Australian wildlife and to learn how you can help, visit https://www.spcai.org/news/feature-stories/saving-wildfire-victims

About SPCA International

SPCA International is a global animal welfare organization with a mission that is simple, but vast: to advance the safety and well-being of animals. Through outreach, rescue and education programs, SPCA International spearheads lifesaving initiatives and assists grassroots animal activists worldwide. Visit us at https://www.spcai.org/about-spcai/