CBS47 On Your Side: How to help support the Australian wildfires relief effort

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FRESNO, California (KSEE/KGPE) — The wildfires in Australia have killed at least twenty-five people and destroyed nearly 20-million acres so far.

Many from Hollywood and around the world are giving to help the fire victims and animals.

But where is all that money really going?

There are reports of fake crowd sourcing sites, questionable appeals on social media, and even people going door-to-door claiming to be collecting money for Australian firefighter assistance.

Before you give the Better Business Bureau serving Central California & Inland Empire counties says to do your homework.

Australian officials are advising to help fire survivors, to give to the Australian Red Cross, the Salvation Army of Australia, and the St. Vincent de Paul Society of Australia.

To help the animals, a group called WIRES, which stands for Wildlife Information Rescue and Education Services, ASPCA of New South Wales, Vets Beyond Borders, the Port Macquarie Koala Hospital and the World Wildlife Fund.

To help firefighters, you can give to the Country Fire Authority and the NSW Rrural Fire Service and Brigades Donations Fund.

A good place to start according to BBB officials is give.org.

Clayton Alexander with the BBB says, “You can look for what sort of questions you should be asking before you give them your money.”

Alexander says you should also check to make sure the organization gives at least 80 percent or more of each dollar to help those in need.

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