Makeshift Koala Shelter in School Hall Treating Hundreds of Injured Animals | 22 Words

A school in Adelaide, South Australia, has transformed its hall into a makeshift animal hospital for the injured koalas in the area.

The heartwarming incentive, which has seen over 150 volunteers work tirelessly around the clock to achieve, has been nursing the burnt and dehydrated animals back to health in a small step towards reviving the country from their devastating bushfires.

Keep scrolling to see the photos from the hospital, and to hear how many marsupials they've managed to save...

 

Australia is being ravished by one of the worst bush fire crises the world has seen in decades.

Due to soaring temperatures and one of the worst droughts in years, the relentless fires have been burning since September. We're currently in January. Just let that sink in.

New South Wales is suffering immensely at the moment.

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There have been fires reported in every state, but New South Wales is truly taking a beating by bush fires and is undoubtedly the hardest hit. More than 2,200 houses have now been destroyed.

NSW declared a state of emergency last month.

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What does this mean? Well, it grants "extraordinary powers" to the NSWRFS commissioner, including the authority to allocate government resources and direct government agencies in taking action, according to CNN.

Twenty-eight people have been confirmed to have died in the fires since they started...

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Including several volunteer firefighters.

The Australian fire services have truly been stretched to their limits.

Firefighters all over the country have been tirelessly battling the formidable blazes and are struggling to contain them. Keep scrolling to see the heartbreaking pictures of the aftermath.

Australia has even been forced to make a global call for help...

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And it was Canada that was the first to respond and take action. The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre, based in Winnipeg, answered the call for help after realizing the bush fire situation is expected to continue for many more weeks and gave up their Christmas to help fight the raging fires.

Other countries offered their assistance...

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Including the U.S. and New Zealand, who have sent in more firefighters to try and help tackles the blazes.

But even with assistance from overseas...

There seems to be no end to the blazes. In total, more than 10.7 million hectares (26 million acres) have been burned, CNN reports. And those who escaped the flames have lost their homes, with all their possessions perishing to the flames.

How long could the fires actually be burning for?

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Sadly, Australia has only just entered summer, meaning temperatures could remain high for some weeks. In fact, temperatures usually reach their highest during January and February, so there may be no end in sight for months.

And, even more heartbreakingly so, the fires have also had a devasting impact on wildlife.

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Several of Australia's native species have been affected including kangaroos, koalas, wallabies, possums, wombats, and echidnas.

And the latest statistics are some of the most alarming yet.

The country is totally unprepared for the devastation caused to its wildlife. Science for Wildlife executive director Dr. Kellie Leigh told the New South Wales upper house inquiry: "We're getting a lot of lessons out of this and it's just showing how unprepared we are.
"There's no procedures or protocols in place - even wildlife carers don't have protocols for when they can go in after fire."

And that's not all...

It's feared that animals that managed to survive the flames will need huge amounts of humanitarian assistance to get populations anywhere near back to what they used to be.

Residents have even been trying to rescue helpless animals themselves.

And of course, we all remember Lewis the koala who was heroically rescued by a woman using the clothes off her back.

A staggering number of animals have perished in the fires.

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And its only set to get worse. But the number that surfaced this week is utterly heartbreaking.

Over one billion animals have died.

It's thought now over one billion mammals, birds, and reptiles have died since September.

And it is the koalas who have been amongst the hardest hit.

It's believed that at least a third of koalas in New South Wales alone have perished in the flames.

It's a heartbreaking fact...

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But koalas simply don't stand as good of a chance as the other native animals.

A koala's instinct is to climb to safety...

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So, rather than running away like the other animals, they are climbing higher into the burning trees.

And the eucalyptus trees in which they reside are incredibly flammable...

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And, as a result, housands of helpless koalas have been finding themselves stuck in the burning trees...

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With no possible means of escape.

So it is of vital importance that we help the struggling marsupials as much as we can.

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Animal hospitals across the country have been overflowing with injured koalas, and thousands of people have been donating and volunteering in a desperate attempt to get their population numbers back up.

And many people have been taking matters into their own hands...

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By rescuing the struggling koalas themselves.

It's truly heartwarming to see the efforts made by the Australian people...

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And people all over the world have been donating money in a bid to provide the surviving koalas with the food and care they so desperately need.

But there's one school that has gone the extra mile...

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A school hall in the north of Adelaide, South Australia, has taken in some of the surviving koalas affected by last month's Adelaide Hills fire.

Over 100 koalas have been taken in...

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And volunteers have been working around the clock to create a make-shift animal hospital for the burnt, dehydrated, and severely injured marsupials.

Over 150 volunteers have pitched in...

And at least eighty trained veterinarians have been attending the make-shift hospital to help tend to the injured animals.

Dozens of tents have been erected...

Which, once kitted out with branches and leaves, make a comfortable little home for the koalas while they recover from their injuries.

The "hospital" has been split into various sections...

There is an intensive care unit and a burn unit, a treatment area, a chlamydia section, a baby section, and indoor and outdoor trees for those well enough to climb.

Each koala has been given a name...

And each has its own little medical record. And, once the staff is satisfied with their health, they will eventually be released back into the wild.

Let's hope this amazing incentive will be adopted in other areas of the country...

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Where, sadly, the flames continue to burn and claim the lives of millions of animals. To see the full extent of the bushfires, keep scrolling to witness the before and after photos of the devastating aftermath...