Helping Australia’s bushfire animals

by Laurie Willetts

Selwyn residents are invited to help rescue efforts for wildlife devastated by the Australian bushfires.

Libraries at Lincoln, Rolleston, Leeston and Darfield have opened their doors for sewing enthusiasts and knitters to help make pouches, wraps and nests to be sent to Australia. Patterns, materials and sewing machines are available at the libraries.

“Staff became aware of the Animal Rescue Craft Guild’s plight and decided they could help,” says Arts, Culture and Lifelong Learning manager Nicki Moen.

“One thing we can do is give practical assistance, by knitting and sewing pouches and wraps that will directly help rehabilitate animals injured in the wildfires. People have been really touched by the plight of these animals, and the organisations that are struggling to keep up with the scale of the devastation.

“This appeal is an opportunity to bring the community together, repurpose old sheets and linen and give people a purpose who might otherwise feel helpless in Australia’s time of need. We are grateful for the community’s support to help out in this way.”

Residents can also make items at home. Pattern and sewing requirements can be found online or the Selwyn Libraries’ Facebook page.

“Demand is highest for kangaroo joey pouches, wraps for bats and crocheted nests for displaced birds.

“Libraries are also keen to accept donations of soft natural fibres, such as flannelette cotton for linings.

“Volunteers can call in to help or drop off donations to any Selwyn Library during normal opening hours.

“Completed items will be boxed up and posted to agencies in Australia. The project will continue as long as the demand for items remains.”