Striking Photograph of Koala Wildfire Survivor Helps Raise Funds for Australia Emergency Efforts

Photographer David Yarrows #KoalaComeback Campaign Aims to Raise $2 million for WildArk and Earth Alliances Australia Wildfire Fund

Over the course of the last 10 days, photographer David Yarrow has been in Australia documenting the devastating bush fires that have destroyed communities, wildlife and wildlands. Using the striking and poignant images that he captured of the effects of the fire, Yarrow and environmental nonprofit organisation WildArk is today launching the #KoalaComeback Campaign to raise $2 million to support recovery efforts in Australia. Fifty percent of the proceeds will be directed to Earth Alliance’s Australia Wildfire Fund, and WildArk will use the remaining donations to support local organizations working on wildlife rehabilitation and habitat restoration.

The campaign has been endorsed by global champions across the world including actor Chris Hemsworth and his wife Elsa Pataky pictured here with their print of ‘Survivor’. Photo: © David Yarrow.

“The day in Australia when I saw 500 dead animals for every live one will remain with me forever,” Yarrow said. “This is a call to arms and we are blessed with a celebrated army of passionate conservationists. I hope that this photograph of a lone koala I found sitting dumbfounded at the base of a tree, which we are calling ‘Survivor,’ becomes known and emblematic of a period in time when we all became aware of our planet’s deep fragility—and that it can help us raise money to make a difference.

Donors who make a contribution of $1,000 will receive a signed 24” x 33” print of ‘Survivor’ delivered to their homes. Yarrow’s large monochrome black and white images typically sell for upwards of $50,000 and sometimes as much as $100,000. Donors who make a contribution between $10 and $100 will receive a downloadable file of ‘Survivor.’ All donors will receive an automated email with the watermarked image alongside instructions about how to spread the message further and encourage more donations.

Donors who make a contribution between $10 and $100 will receive a downloadable file of ‘Survivor.’ Photo: David Yarrow

This campaign is already being endorsed and supported by global champions across the world: In Australia, actor Chris Hemsworth and his wife Elsa as well as Australian cricket legend Shane Warne; in the UK, the iconic Cara Delevingne; and in the United States, supermodel Cindy Crawford, sporting superstar Tom Brady, and Earth Alliance cofounder, environmental activist and Academy Award®-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio.

WildArk is a global conservation effort that was founded in 2016 to help support the protection of species and ecosystems worldwide. The Australia Wildfire Fund was launched in January by Aussie Ark, Earth Alliance and Global Wildlife Conservation to directly support on-the-ground efforts to restore Australia’s wildlife and wildlands.

“This is a dark time for Australia and one that David Yarrow has captured in his photography in a powerful and particularly moving way,” said Don Church, Global Wildlife Conservation president. “With the support of individual champions around the world who want to help, we have a chance to continue to respond to these fires, recover from them, and even to help prevent them in the future. Australia’s unique wildlife and ecosystems depend on a global response to this crisis and the Australia Wildfire Fund is meant to funnel that support to make the biggest impact on the ground.”

David Yarrow photographing the devastation on Kangaroo Island.

The recent wildfires are the worst in Australia in decades, particularly in New South Wales. The conditions have been exacerbated by drought, negative agricultural practices, and strong winds that have caused the fires to spread rapidly. The fires have killed, injured and displaced some of Australia’s most unique animals, including koalas, kangaroos and platypuses. Wildlife experts estimate that more than a billion animals have been killed, including up to 30 percent of the koala population living in New South Wales. This is particularly devastating for the country with highest rate of mammalian extinctions on Earth.

“‘Survivor’ portrays the heartbreaking bleakness of this crisis, but it also serves as a symbol of hope for the future; the solidarity behind this effort has been inspiring,” said WildArk CEO John Hardman. “The koala, as an iconic Australian animal, represents all of the wild places in need of restoration. Supporting species rehabilitation and habitat restoration on Kangaroo Island and throughout New South Wales and Victoria will be essential for the koala recovery process and for the thousands of other species who are represented in these targeted areas.”

To support this campaign and own your very own David Yarrow image please visit:

Read more about WildArk ambassador David Yarrow here.