American talk show host Ellen DeGeneres is the latest international celebrity to throw her support behind fundraising efforts as the Australian bushfire crisis continues.
On Tuesday the 61-year-old announced she had launched a GoFundMe page with a US$5 million target to raise money for firefighting services and wildlife shelters.
“Australia is in an emergency like nothing anyone on earth has seen before,” she wrote on Twitter.
“Please help. Donate if you can. The loss of homes, and the lives of people and animals is catastrophic.”
An accompanying video showed Ellen make the announcement on her popular show, revealing photography company and partner of the show, Shutterfly, kicked off the donations with a $100,000 contribution.
“I love Australia,” she said. “I love Australia so much, I even married an Australian.”
The TV star recalled visiting the country back in 2013 when she took her show Down Under, and said it made her love the nation and its people even more.
“And right now, Australia needs our help,” she continued.
“Wildfires have been burning for four months, and with record-breaking heat. The winds are so strong and it’s getting worse.”
She then said, “It will take years for Australia to rebuild and they need our help”.
The 2019/2020 bushfire season death toll stands at 25, 10.3 million hectares of land has been burnt, a billion animals are feared to have perished,thousands of people have been evacuated from holiday beaches, and more than 1900 homes have been destroyed.
Other celebrities who have donated include Elton John and Chris Hemsworth with $1 million each, as well as billionaire James Packer ($5 million), singer Pink ($500,000) and comedian Celeste Barber who has helped raise over $40 million through her fundraising page.