Comedian Celeste Barber Helps Raise a Record-Breaking $32M for Australian Wildfires Relief
The fundraiser, which launched on Friday, has already garnered donations from more than 1.2 million people
Last week, Barber, 37, launched a wildly successful Facebook fundraiser benefitting The Trustee for NSW Rural Fire Service & Brigades Donations Fund.
The fundraiser, which launched on Friday, has since raised more than $32 million. At the time of publication, 1.2 million people had donated to the page.
“This is incredible,” she tweeted after seeing how much she’d raised. “Power to the people.”
According to Business Insider Australia, the page is Facebook’s largest global fundraiser.
“Want to join me in supporting a good cause? I’m raising money for The Trustee for NSW Rural Fire Service & Brigades Donations Fund and your contribution will make an impact, whether you donate a lot or a little,” the Australia native wrote on the fundraiser page. “Anything helps. Thank you for your support.”
On Twitter, she has been calling on wealthy celebrities to donate.
“Hey billionaires, Notre Dame burning down sucked. I get it. Times that by a trillion and that’s what’s happening in Australia. Feel free to flick us a quick couple of million. You make it seem pretty easy,” she tweeted, referencing the multi-million-dollar donations that poured in after the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris was burned in a fire in April.
“Hi everyone. Like you, I want to support the fight against the bushfires here in Australia. My family and I are contributing a million dollars. Hopefully you guys can chip in too. Every penny counts so whatever you can muster up is greatly appreciated,” Hemsworth wrote on Instagram. “Beyond appreciative to everyone around the world for their well wishes and donations. It really does make a difference, so dig deep! Love ya.”
Over the weekend Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban also donated $500,000 to Rural Fire Service, a rep for Kidman told PEOPLE. The couple hold Australia near and dear to their hearts, as the actress is Australian-American and the country singer was born in New Zealand and raised in Australia.
“Our family’s support, thoughts and prayers are with everyone affected by the fires all over Australia. We are donating $500,000 to the Rural Fire Services who are all doing and giving so much right now,” Kidman shared on Instagram. The country singer also shared the same statement on Instagram.
Since September, at least 24 people have been killed, including 10 firefighters, according to Time. Over 12 million acres have been wiped out, with hundreds of homes and buildings destroyed as the more than 130 fires continue to burn across the country — leaving thousands of people displaced. A seven-day state of emergency was declared on Dec. 23.
Just last week, ecologists from the University of Sydney announced that they believe almost half a billion animals have died. A recent fire on Kangaroo Island off the coast of South Australia killed tens of thousands of koalas.