Victorian bushfire response
The devastating bushfires sweeping across Victoria have affected us all. We know there are many people in our community who wish to help, and Darebin is doing what it can to aid affected communities.
What is Darebin doing?
Darebin Council will be sending specialist staff to Towong Shire in North East Victoria to help with the response and recovery effort there. Towong Shire is one of Victoria's smallest councils but is dealing with one of the state's biggest fires. At this early stage this will include some of Council's arborists, engineers, bushland crew, environmental health officers, and those with emergency management experience. Depending on the needs of Towong we are also prepared to send equipment, machinery and vehicles to assist in the recovery effort.
What can I do?
We know there are many Darebin residents who may also wish to help out by holding their own community fundraising events for specific fire brigades, charities or animal rescue groups. We encourage people to let us know by adding an event to our calendar so that we may share the event on our social media.
To assist with this, Darebin is also offering free venue hire for bushfire related fundraising activities at the following locations:
- Reservoir Community and Learning Centre
- Darebin North East Community Hub
- Intercultural Centre
- Keon Park Children’s Hub
- Community rooms and halls
- Northcote Town Hall Arts Centre
- Bundoora Homestead Arts Centre
To register your interest in holding fundraiser at one of these spaces, please contact:
Phone: 8470 8110
Another important action everyone can do is to visit the bushfire affected communities once it is safe to do so. Many businesses in these country towns rely heavily on tourist dollars, and visiting these areas can have a positive impact on the local economy.
You may also wish to volunteer to your own time with a charity group or join your local SES, or even make an appointment to donate blood.
Where can I donate?
There are many organisations collecting money to be used to help communities and wildlife recover from the bushfires. This is just a select few.
Victorian Bushfire Appeal
The Victorian Government has partnered with Bendigo Bank and The Salvation Army to establish the Victorian Bushfire Appeal. 100 per cent of donated funds will go directly to communities in need. Visit the Victorian Bushfire Appeal page for more information.
The CFA has two ways for people to donate. The first is for donations to specific firefighting brigades, and the second is for the CFA public fund which goes towards volunteer firefighter training. For more information, please visit the CFA donation page.
Donations to the Wildlife Victoria Bushfire Appeal will ensure money raised will stay in the state and be used to care for Victorian animals affected by the fires. WIRES is another organisation raising money for affected wildlife, but is focused on the recovery efforts in New South Wales. Donate to Wildlife Victoria.
Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund
The Gippsland Emergency Relief fund has been set up to provide immediate short term financial relief for Gipplsand residents who have been affected by natural disasters. For more information visit the Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund website.
Fire Relief Fund for First Nations Communities
Yorta Yorta man Neil Morris has established a GoFundMe page to raise money for culturally sensitive direct support for the First Nations communities of Eastern Australia that have been impacted by the bushfires. Visit their GoFundMe page.
Zoos Victoria has set up a dedicated Bushfire Emergency Wildlife Fund which will be used to fund emergency veterinarian care and recovery efforts like supplementary feeding for the animals who have survived, but whose habitats have been destroyed by the bushfires. For more information visit the Zoos Victoria Fire Fund page.
WWF is raising money to specifically help Australia’s koala population recover after these bushfires. For more information visit the WWF Bushfire Emergency page.
The Australian Red Cross has set up a Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund. Donations go towards helping victims of the fires, but will also be used for recovery efforts of future natural disasters. For more information visit the Red Cross donation page.
Victorian Aboriginal Education Association Inc
The VAEAI in Northcote held a community collection of specific donated goods on January 8 to be taken to fire affected communities. Stay tuned to their website and social media for any further announcements.