8 Celebrities Who Have Donatedto Fight Australia’s Wildfires.Wildfires continue to rage across Australia, having scorchedmore than 12 million acres of land since September. .With the fires only expected to worsen, a number of celebritieshave taken to social media to speak out about the issue. .Here are eight celebrities who have publiclydonated to help fight the wildfires in Australia.1. Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban, whose houseis currently at risk due to the fires, donated$500,000 to the Rural

Hamilton arts center director helping raise funds for ‘unimaginable’ fires in his native Australia

Ian MacKenzie-Thurley, executive director of the Fitton Center for Creative Arts in Hamilton, said entire towns have been destroyed by the fires that have been burning for weeks.

MacKenzie-Thurley, 45, said his 80-year-old mother has told him the fires, an annual occurrence in Australia, have been the “worst” she has witnessed.

So when he was contacted by Miranda McGee, organizer of the Rescue the Down Under fundraiser, he asked, “What can we do to help?”

He has contacted local media about the event and is helping solicit area businesses for donations. He called the response “overwhelming.”

Even his daughter, Lily, 10, a fifth-grader at Bridgeport Elementary School in Hamilton, is helping. She made a presentation Thursday night and sought donations. She collected $28, but through social media, those donations exceeded $800 by Friday, her father said.

McGee, an Australian citizen, was struck seeing images of her homeland burning when she approached a local bar, Queen City Radio, about hosting an Australia Day benefit with portion of proceeds benefiting the Red Cross, Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) and the Australian Bushfire Relief Fund (ABRF).

McGee said she was “blown away” by the outpouring of support the Cincinnati community has offered to this cause.

She said local breweries, theatres, sports teams and Cincinnati institutions have reached out and offered to donate silent auction items and experiences and local companies have said they will match what is raised.

She said that generosity has been “incredibly humbling.”

The event will feature a silent auction, drink specials, and a raffle with food by the Chicken Mac Truck. Live music will be performed by local musicians Frankly Speaking, Zack Sliver, and Nick Federinko.

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