KELLIE Jackson had only resumed sewing after a 30 year break when, moved by the number of animals who had been killed, injured or displaced due to bushfires, she packed her sewing machine and headed to Hamilton.
"I just felt despondent and didn't know how to help," Ms Jackson said.
She arrived at the Kavon Theme Restaurant, where about 70 people gathered from 4pm on Friday for a Wildlife Sewing Bee to make pouches for injured, orphaned and fire and drought affected animals.
Within minutes the room was packed with groups sorting supplied and donated fabrics and then cutting, pinning and sewing pouches.
"It's great to see the community coming together," she said. "Everyone is helping in their own way."
Kavon co-owner and Animal Rescue Collective Craft Guild (ARCCG) member Bee Roals said people were looking for ways to channel how they felt into something constructive.
"This is bringing communities and families together," Ms Roals said.
"We've got grandmothers teaching 18 year old boys to sew. It's one bit of good in an awful situation."
She said while some had been sewing items in their own homes for months, it was important to connect people with each other in real life.
"We're all trying to help each other," she said. "We have beginner sewers who need a bit of guidance but it's also about fostering a sense of community and working together for a common cause."
Ms Roals said the public didn't understand just how little assistance wildlife carers received.
"Possum pouches may be $25 each and if they've got 50 possums then every one needs one."
She said ARCCG had relationships with wildlife carers across the country, who were advising which type and what quantity of items they needed.
She said the organisation had been "inundated" with koala mittens and so attendees were working on day and night versions of hanging bags for both kangaroos and wallabies, as well as pouches with three liners in a range of sizes, from 10 x 10 centimetres to 60 x 70 centimetres, for kangaroos, possums, wombats and other animals.
Michele Judge said she had also wanted to attend the climate action protest in Civic Park, but felt sewing was the "more urgent need".
"This is the littlest we can do," she said.
"It's wonderful and has almost brought me to tears."
She will knit items for animals when travelling to the Gold Coast on Saturday.
Judy Franklin said surviving wildlife needed comfort.
"It must be so frightening for them."
Ms Roals will host a second sewing bee today, January 11, from 1pm to 5pm, and said she would set up gazebos to accommodate the expected large number of attendees.
She said non-sewers who wanted to help and donations of fabrics and cash were welcome.