ABOUT THE ANIMAL:
Koalas are marsupials found only in Australia. They spend most of their time high up in eucalyptus trees, munching on the leaves which they consume over a pound per day of! If they’re not sleeping, they’re eating, spending between 18-22 hours per day getting some shut-eye.
In the 2019/20 bushfires, over 1000 koalas died, with over 80% of their habitat destroyed. Already classified as vulnerable and considered by some as ‘functionally extinct’, meaning there are not enough left in the wild to have a viable population, koalas are at an even greater risk. Already their greatest threat was habitat loss. Now that threat is even greater.
ABOUT THE PROJECT:
The 2019/20 bushfires in Australia have made a huge impact, not only to the people whose lives have been directly affected but also on the world stage.
One particular story that caught the attention of the world was of a little koala called Lewis who was snatched from the flames by the brave Toni Doherty in Port Macquarie in NSW. Sadly, Lewis succumbed to his burns only 4 hours after the memorial was announced, leaving an even greater hole of devastation from the fires.
Expertly crafted in bronze, Lewis will sit wrapped in his bandages atop the stump of a burnt eucalyptus, the major food source for koalas.
Lewis has a permanent home at the Port Central Shopping Centre in Port Macquarie in NSW.
To help spread the message, the artists donated to Port Central Shopping Centre a beautiful bronze memorial of Lewis to tell the story of the heroic acts of an Australian grandmother and the importance of compassion and conservation.
HOW TO HELP:
Gillie and Marc have created many beautiful works of art depicting koalas, including little Lewis. By purchasing any of these, a percentage of the proceeds will go to the Koala Hospital in Port Macquarie: https://gillieandmarc.com/collections/conservation-art-koalas