Piano students in Lake Country are helping save Australia’s koalas one song at a time.
Fifty students from Musically Inclined, a private music business, have been hosting an online benefit concert series for the past week with all proceeds going towards helping Australia’s koalas escape the wildfires.
The concert series will be held on the studio’s Facebook page where viewers can “tip” to support their fundraiser. The concert series will continue until Feb. 16.
Heather Koss-Huisman, a piano teacher for the past 25 years, said these kinds of initiatives are a great way for the community to support the young musicians, as well as the greater cause.
“We’re glad to have the community involved,” said Koss-Huisman.
“It’s good for kids to learn that they can make a difference, but it’s also pretty cool when the community rallies around the children and especially in Lake Country where people live here because they like that sense of community.”
The funds from the concerts will go to Friends of the Koala, a registered non-profit charity in New South Wales, Australia. The charity uses the funds to help with the rescue and treatment of sick and injured koalas. They are released back into the wild once it’s appropriate to do so. Funds will also be put towards habitat restoration after the devastating wildfires.
Koss-Huisman said she contemplated a few different organizations, but decided to use the money to help koalas. Many of her students are as young as four years old and relate to animals much better than they would with an organization that helps people.
”(The children) definitely understand the impact they’re having,” she said.
“Certainly they understand the wildfires and what that does to animals. The non-profit that we’ve chosen have koalas on their website for adoption. So, we’ve looked at the koalas and read up on each of them, what their personalities are like and everything. They know the money is going towards the food and the water and they’re kind of disappointed they don’t get a koala in the mail,” said Koss-Huisman, with a laugh.
As of today, over 10 million hectares of Australian land have been burned to the ground and over one billion animals have lost their lives so far, including thousands of koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, birds and other iconic wildlife.