The 30th of May 2017 was a dark day, my friends – for it was the day of the announcement that Life Education Australia, the home of Healthy Harold – the van-dwelling, healthy-lifestyle supporting giraffe – had been defunded by the government.
In a statement on their website, Life Education CEO David Ballhausen revealed that the organisation had been “defunded by the Australian Government for the first time in ‘literally decades’.” Although many took to social media in an outcry at the ‘death’ of Harold, Ballhausen ensured that the cut in funding would be most felt by the children, but that Life Education has to “revise our expectations of what is achievable in the short to medium term”. That doesn’t point to an outright death, but many took it that way.
Even Bill Shorten had a word to put in about the whole ordeal.
— Bill Shorten (@billshortenmp) May 30, 2017
Luckily, the social media outcry did not turn out to be in vain, as literally hours later, Education Minister Simon Birmingham took to Twitter to comment on the matter.
We support #HealthyHarold & will work with Life Education Australia to ensure the funding & the program continues
— Simon Birmingham (@Birmo) May 30, 2017
Many have taken this as Harold’s resurrection, but some still have their doubts (which is fair – it’s just a tweet, after all). David Ballhausen commented on the minister’s tweet, stating that he looks forward to resolving the issue and will keep the public informed of the outcome.
That’s right – the fight’s not over – but with the huge amount of publicity Harold has gotten lately, and the big love that Aussie’s obviously have for him, hopefully everything should be ok.