As wildfires continue to blaze on in Australia, it is the country's firefighters who are fighting the most difficult battle.
Australia is currently being ravaged by unprecedented wildfires, greater in strength and intensity than ever before. The blaze has shown the country's government just how unprepared they really are for such a natural disaster. As the fires rage on, public servants such as firefighters and emergency responders have been overworked, fighting long and hard to quell the bushfires and rescue as many people as possible. Without a doubt, this is a difficult job and it can take its toll. While it's easy to assume how especially bad it is for Australia's firefighters, it became very real and visceral for people when they saw a photo of a firefighter taking a quick nap on his lawn on his tenth day fighting the blaze for over 12 hours.
The photo was uploaded by Jenna O’Keeffe and featured her dad. She wrote, "This is a picture of my dad getting five minutes [of] sleep on our front lawn, while my brother keeps watch over the fire burning at the top of our farm after he finished his tenth over-12 hour day in a row fighting voluntarily in the community with the [New South Wales Rural Fire Service]. My family [has] been fighting these fires on our farm and our community nonstop for over a month. They are tired, they are sore, and they are running out of resources. Today I heard my dad cry, he said, 'Jen, I have never seen anything like this, it’s never-ending.' We still have over 50 days of summer left, we aren’t even halfway and there is currently no end in sight."
However, she did not want people to give up hope. "Please don’t become numb to what’s happening," she continued. "Don’t get caught up in the negativity, the politics, the Facebook news, the drama! Australia is on fire and there are brave people all over the country VOLUNTARILY fighting day in, day out to keep our lives and homes safe. These firefighters need our support more than ever! This should be our one and only focus. To all of the people helping directly and indirectly around the country, thank you! To everyone else, don’t forget to donate what you can to your charity of choice, every little bit will help! This is far from over! To my family, I can not express how proud I am of you all! I love you and am forever thankful."
Her post highlighted just how hard Australia's men and women are working in order to protect the country's citizens, environment, and wildlife. While the intense wildfires continue to blaze on, there is hope in the outpouring of help from the international community. From individuals making donations to wildfire relief projects and celebrities committing large amounts of money towards similar causes to firefighters from other countries across the world volunteering to help out, every little bit is making a difference. After all, the wildfires are a result of manmade climate change. The natural disaster sends us all a message - it's time to act now in order to stop rising global temperatures. There, simply put, is no Planet B.