SETAUKET, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — It’s estimated more than a billion animals have died since September because of the wildfires that are ravaging Australia.
Now, children are stepping up to help the animals still trying to survive.
Lily is spearheading a pouch project to help save the lives of millions of orphaned Australian marsupials, like kangaroos, whose parents died in the devastating wildfires that continue to spread the continent.
“I felt really horrible about all of these animals and how they were dying and I wanted to find a way to help,” she said.
Each pouch replicates the natural ones marsupial mothers have. Without them, infants can’t survive.
“So we’re using cotton and fleece and flannel to be soft on their skin,” Lily said.
Lily is getting her whole class to help out.
“I think it’s a really great way to help animals and I think it’s innovative of her,” classmate Charleigh Serna said.
“There are really good children out there in the world and we see our future leaders right in front of our eyes, which is wonderful,” said STEM teacher Gina Varacchi.
Kids all across America are lending a helping hand to the animals in Australia.
A 6-year-old who lives in the Boston area is hand-making little koalas out of clay. He says anyone who makes a donation can receive a koala. He has already raised $1,200.
“We can help the fires and help the animals,” he said. “Because helping animals is better than watching TV.”
Though they are little, these kids know the big impact of the wildfires and are not willing to quit until the end.
“I want to make as many [pouches] as possible and I just want to make them until the fires can stop,” Lily said.
No matter the distance or age, they’re here to help.
Lily’s school and community are supplying the fabric and materials for the pouches. On Friday, the school will be hosting an assembly to get more kids involved.
If you would like to help, you can find more information here: www.wires.org.au