Returning to work today was very different to every other year I have returned to work after an extended break as I felt somewhat grateful for the fact that I could. I could wake up in my house, enjoy a walk to the gym in the fresh air, come home for a hearty breakfast before sitting in my comfortable office ready to begin. This is a luxury that many Australians are not able to enjoy at the moment.
As everyone around the globe is aware, Australia is being faced with one of its worst natural disasters in history. Fires are happening in every state and territory with an unfathomable loss of life - both human and animal - and the destruction of so many people's prizes possessions.
The sheer size of these fires is so hard to comprehend. We've all seen the comparison maps of how the fire-torn regions overlay in some of the world's most heavily populated countries. I believe that this graph here shows the size of the fires best. Before these fires began (or we really started to take notice of them) a few months ago, the news was sharing images of the fires happening in the Amazon Rainforest and in California. I am by no means trying to play down the affects that these fires had on their respective areas, but when you see the difference between them and the current Australian crisis - it really hits you hard.
I feel that we could discuss this topic all day - especially as the smell of smoke begins to fill the air around my house again as the wind has shifted direction - but we need to start thinking about how we can ensure that something like this does not happen again. I am the first person to admit that I rarely have any interest in politics - but whoever is running the show needs to be shown the door. Scientists and Aboriginal elders have warned of this for some time now. Yes, we have had bushfire seasons in the past but nothing of this magnitude within record keeping times. Climate scientists have been discussing the need for action for so long - hopefully this will be the catalyst that the 'non-believers' need to wake up and smell the smoke... something needs to be done AND FAST or we won't have a beautiful country, with it's unique wildlife, to enjoy for much longer.
If you had made it this far... thank you... please consider donating to one of the many charities that need our help. If you aren't entirely sure which one to donate to, simply contribute to Celeste Barber's fundraising page on Facebook. She is just a woman who started out 'taking the piss' out of celebrities on Instagram and has amassed a huge following. She is one of the few people who is using her 'celebrity' for good. In 3 days she has (as I type) raised $35 MILLION dollars. People around the world are contributing and it's amazing to see. Hopefully some amazing multi-national will decide to match what she raises.