You might have heard the news from down under last week, when horrible wildfires in Southern Australia, damaged not only a huge amount of land, but also killed and injured a lot of animals.
At the time, it seemed that koalas were the animals most affected by the wildfire. Some of these koalas were so badly burned that their paws, both feet and hands, were incredibly charred from the fire and flames. It was heartbreaking to hear about all of those injured kolas, but the Internet stepped in and fulfilled a cry for koala mittens from the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW). Suddenly thousands of people from all over the world were sending mittens to help the koalas recover. (The mittens are put on the koalas paws to keep them safe and clean after they’re bandaged up.) Well the koalas officially have enough mittens! Well done Internet.
What the IFAW is asking for now are pouches for baby kangaroos (aka joeys). The IFAW put out a statement thanking the world for their koala support saying, “Sometimes things happen that reaffirm your faith in humanity. This last week has been one of those moments for all of us in the IFAW Australia office. When we put out the call last week for people to sew mittens to protect the bandaged paws of koalas burnt in bushfires, we never could have imagined the response.” We did good, world.
The IFAW is now looking for “‘pouch liners’ for baby kangaroos, possums and wallabies injured or orphaned in wildfires.” The IFAW further explains that the animal “carers need a ready supply as pouches are changed regularly after each feed and up to six pouches can be used per animal each day.”
The IFAW is still more than happy to accept koala mittens, noting that, “sadly we will always need a good stockpile for the inevitable bush fires yet to come.” (BRB, crying a little) But now their main focus is getting supplies to take care of these animals orphaned in the fires, who might be used to living in a mama’s pouch. So pick back up those sewing needles, and crank up that sewing machine. We’ve got a lot of work to do.
The pattern for the pouches is actually available online for those eager to put their craft skills to good use, but remember everything has to be 100% cotton. They even suggest old bedsheets or flannel as good fabrics to use. Considering the INCREDIBLE outpouring of support and love that was sent to Australia for the koalas, let’s do the same for all the joeys, possums and wallabies. And while we might not be able to prevent any more horrific wildfires, we can at least take very good care of the animals injured. Let’s get sewing!