Over the weekend, the white sails of Australia’s Sydney Opera House lit up in tribute to the firefighters battling on the frontlines against Australia’s unprecedented and devastating bush fires. Wildfires have ravaged the country since the fire season first began in late July, to date claiming the lives of 28 people as well as over a billion animals (estimated), and causing countless property damage throughout Australia’s six states. Sydney itself has seen its summer skyline turn hazy red from smoke and dust.
As a response to this catastrophe, the iconic Opera House displayed large projections of firefighters battling the fires across the country, with a few messages of support from the affected communities.
“Tonight, we are illuminating the Sydney Opera House sails to show our support for everyone affected by the Australian bushfires,” wrote the opera house in a post on their official Twitter. “We want to send a message of hope and strength, and importantly to thank the emergency services and volunteers for their incredible efforts and courage.”
According to CNN, the Sydney Opera House is also planning on co-hosting a comedy gala fundraiser in support of the communities affected by the fires in March, when the fire season is expected to be over. Fire conditions may ease as heavy rains are forecasted through Australia this week, but currently, there are over 100 fires still burning, 36 of which are being characterized as “out of control,” according to a recent report from the Guardian.
For tips on how you can help the efforts in Australia, check our explainer on the Australian bush fires.