Jirrahlinga Koala and Wildlife Sanctuary urgently seeks public donations as funding dries up amid lockdowns
07.06.2021

Jirrahlinga Koala and Wildlife Sanctuary urgently seeks public donations as funding dries up amid lockdowns

Words by Talia Rinaldo

The local animal rescue centre depends on funding from visitors.

The region’s hard-working animal sanctuaries face an uphill battle at the best of times, but with the Covid-19 pandemic bringing an unprecedented drop in visitors, their future has never looked more precarious.

Jirrahlinga Koala and Wildlife Sanctuary is one local sanctuary in dire straits and needs donations and other support to keep the sanctuary open, with funding reliant on paid visitor entries, which have stopped with coronavirus restrictions.

The key takeaways

  • Jirrahlinga Koala and Wildlife Sanctuary ask the public for urgent donations to remain open
  • Reliant on overseas and interstate visitors, the sanctuary is seeking to raise $50,000
  • Since last night, the sanctuary has raised more than $26,000

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The local animal haven took to social media on Sunday night with a desperate plea, asking the public for donations.

“I need to let you know that Jirrahlinga is in crisis. We are in desperate need of funds to keep our sanctuary open. Tonight, I’m putting it all on the line and asking for your help,” the post read.

“Due to the ongoing coronavirus restrictions the Sanctuary has lost 100% of overseas visitors and 60% of all interstate visitors that kept our Sanctuary’s head above water.

“As you can imagine, keeping our wildlife safe as well as rescuing animals costs a lot. The constant food and vet bills is sure taking its toll, not to mention the upkeep of the enclosures housing our beautiful wildlife that call Jirrahlinga home.”

Established more than 30 years ago, the Barwon Heads sanctuary cares for injured wildlife and is home to a wide range of native Australian wildlife including koalas, kangaroos, turtles, lizards, emus, dingoes and birds. The sanctuary are needing to raise $50,000 to pay off their bills and give them room to continue supporting the animals in their care.

“As you may know, the number of wildlife coming into care has doubled over recent years not only due to injury but land clearing and development,” the post continued.

“To be honest, we really rely completely on the visitors to our sanctuary to keep us going, with every dollar going straight to the animals so tonight we are putting it all on the line and asking for your help.

“It is really serious and we need you more than ever tonight.

“Just $5 from each and every one of you would get us over the line, it’s the cost of your next cup of coffee but one that will help save Jirrahlinga and our animals.

“We need you tonight. This is our time of need. The pandemic has hit us hard and we need you to help us.”

Since last night, community support has come in droves with the sanctuary raising more than $26,000 at the time of writing.

Those who wish to donate can do so here.