The charity partner of Australia’s National Parks, The Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife (FNPW), is responding to urgent recovery efforts following the Black Summer bushfires by launching its inaugural Matched Giving Day on World Rainforest Day, 22 June 2021.The national fundraiser calls on all Aussies to dig deep and donate to support “Parks, People and Wildlife.”
Following the devastation of the bushfire season and the recent floods, almost 2,000 plant and animal species have been reported as in trouble or extinct, with nearly 1 in 3 of Australia’s unique mammals at risk of extinction. By 2021, 104 endemic Australian species were listed as extinct, with the biggest causes being invasive species and loss of biodiversity and habitat, exacerbated by worsening droughts, floods and bushfires.
As a result, FNPW has partnered with generous supporters, including leading investment manager BetaShares, to double every tax-deductible donation made leading up to and on the 22 June.
To engage as many individuals, groups and organisations as possible, FNPW has activated individual donations, as well as a fundraising team option, to encourage maximum impact, with a live tally to track the donations being made on World Rainforest Day.
Ian Darbyshire, Chief Executive Officer for FNPW, said: “It’s important that we don’t forget the devastation we’ve experienced as a nation over the past few years and continue to protect our threatened species and recover the large expanse of land and habitat lost. Let’s work together to reach our goal of restoring Australia for future generations.”
Alex Vynokur, Chief Executive Officer for BetaShares, said: “We are pleased to be supporting the Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife in the work that they do to restore our country’s natural flora and fauna. Every dollar donated will be doubled to ensure that we can speed up the recovery process and ensure maximum impact. Get your teams involved and help us make this happen.”
For over 50 years, FNPW has worked with corporates, government bodies and donors to grow over 50 national parks and save countless species across the country. As part of this year’s fundraising campaign, the donations raised will support three key areas:
PARKS: 50% of the biodiverse Gondwana Rainforest World Heritage Area in Northern NSW and Southern QLD was affected by the 2019-20 bush fires, and in some parts, was the first time the rain forest had been burned. Unlike many World Heritage Areas, the Gondwana Rainforest is made up of multiple pockets of rain forest that form a corridor across the landscape.
By acquiring more areas of rainforest that are adjacent to or surrounded by the already protected areas, FNPW will increase this corridor, allowing animal species to move across the landscape and for burnt areas to regenerate.
PEOPLE: Each year, FNPW holds a grant round for community groups across Australia to support threatened species, indigenous heritage and on-ground conservation works. In 2020, focuses included:
Wildlife heroes: A project to support people rescuing and rehabilitating wildlife before, during and after the bushfires. As part of this, the Caring for Carers Campaign was created to support the carers themselves through mental health and self-care resources.
Bushfire recovery small grants: These grants went out to people immediately following the bushfires to support threatened species and indigenous heritage projects. This included Yengo National Park, where many sacred sites were mapped for the first time and local indigenous elders worked closely with National Parks staff and archaeologists to preserve the traditional knowledge in the park.
Bushfire recovery nurseries: A key project following the bushfires was providing grants to expand community nurseries across Australia as part of FNPW’s mission to plant one million trees in bushfire-ravaged regions over a five-year period. Over the past year, FNPW has already funded four community nurseries in NSW, SA and ACT to plant a total of 160,000 additional trees.
WILDLIFE: FNPW supports the EPBC list of threatened Australian species. Over the past two years, FNPW has co-funded three ‘Saving our Species’ projects, including the threatened Albert’s Lyrebird populations in the Border Ranges NSW region, of which many were unknown. Most recently, FNPW supported the koala community on the NSW North Coast, by planting over 80,000 trees for koala food and habitat.
All donations raised will go towards supporting these three key pillars to safeguard the future of our parks, people and wildlife.
For more information, to make a donation with double impact and/or create a fundraising team, visit www.charidy.com/FNPW
Ryan Fritz started The Advocate in 2014 to provide not-for-profits and charities another media platform to tell their worthwhile hard news stories and opinion pieces effortlessly. In 2020, Ryan formed a team of volunteer journalists to help spread even more high-quality stories from the third sector. He also has over 10 years experience as a media and communications professional for not-for-profits and charities and currently works at Redkite, a childhood cancer charity.