Order of Malta Australia launches bushfire appeal
Thousands lose homes, animals, stock
Sydney, 9 January 2020
The Order of Malta’s Association in Australia expresses its deepest concern for the violent bushfires which have been raging for months through parts of the country. The unprecedented fires have already claimed over 28 lives. Millions of animals have perished. Millions of acres have burned so far, in an area larger than Belgium.
Direct assistance for fire victims
The Hospitaller of the Association, John Murphy, who has launched a fundraising appeal, describes current action: “The Order of Malta in Australia is responding to the immediate needs of the affected communities in various areas on the east and south coasts. Together with some local parishes, on the south coast of New South Wales we have managed to offer direct assistance to many people who have lost their homes, and in Victoria we are distributing food vouchers.”
More catastrophic weather on the way
Further catastrophic weather conditions are forecast from Friday, local authorities have warned. 3,000 army reservists, along with aircraft and naval ships, are being made available to help with evacuation from afflicted areas.
The Order of Malta Australia will use money from its Natural Disaster Fund to provide emergency relief to those directly impacted. The Association is exploring with its regional Hospitaller network how best to provide assistance to the thousands who have lost homes or are stranded.