Support For Port Stephens Koalas From Italy With Love

A collection of Francesca’s beautiful handmade felt koala creations.


MANY locals were gutted when they learnt of the fate of Patu the koala who was hand raised from the pouch after his mother passed.

What we may not have realised was that Patu not only won hearts here in Port Stephens but across the world.

It was a very sad day for everyone at Port Stephens Koalas when Patu passed.

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Yet his passing has led to a very special donation all the way from Italy from Italy with love!

Francesca Cioffi, from Lecce, Italy, was following the news of the horrific bushfires last summer and the devastating effect it had on koalas.

She was inspired to do something to help, so she adopted one of the koalas on the Port Stephens Koalas’ website, and also made a donation.

Francesca wanted to do more, so she contacted the team at Port Stephens Koalas.

“I’m Italian and I have been following your website since the recent bushfires.

“I love the idea to help you raise money for your little and cute koalas very much, even though I live so far from Australia.

“I’d like to know, if you are pleased to receive my hand-made felt koalas, in order to sell them and fundraise for your organization.”

Shortly after the bushfires, when Covid-19 struck, Italy was hit hard and Francesca spent countless hours throughout 2020 throughout lockdown designing and handcrafting her felt koala decorations, keyrings and bookmarks.

Francesca was particularly touched by the sad loss of Patu at the koala hospital last September, and she handcrafted a felt koala in his memory.

“This is my gift for you at Port Stephens to keep forever: a felt version of our little boy.

“He has a pink rose in his hands because I read you buried him under a rose,” she said.

A representative of Port Stephens Koalas told News Of The Area, “Francesca’s gorgeous handcrafted creations have arrived – all 101 of them!

“Our thanks to Francesca for choosing to support Port Stephens Koalas and it is obvious from the attention to detail such as adding little beads and bows the time that it must have taken Francesca is very much appreciated.”

Port Stephens Koalas will be having a stall on Saturday, 20 March, 2021 (9am-4pm), on the Stockton Street Stage Area in Nelson Bay where the public can pop by and purchase some of these hand -made felt koalas along with other koala merchandise.

All proceeds from this stall are used to look after sick and injured koalas.

From across the miles the team at Port Stephens Koalas send Francesca their Grazie! With Amore!




The special “Patu” koala with his roses.

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