Vinnies to offer bushfire aid advice in Evans Head

Wednesday 5 February 2020

Vinnies volunteers with in-depth knowledge of support packages available to bushfire survivors will offer a free service to locals at Woodburn Evans Head RSL Club on Tuesday 11 February from 9.30am-3.30pm.

The service is designed to provide advice on financial and other support available from Vinnies. Assistance with completing necessary paperwork will also be offered.

Everyone from fire affected communities such as New Italy, Bora Ridge, Coraki, Ellangowan, Wardell and surrounds is invited to attend, regardless of their circumstances or whether they may have already received help.

Vinnies Regional Director/North East Clare Van Doorn said, “In this northern part of the state we have now moved into the bushfire recovery phase, which will be long and challenging as residents negotiate their way through complex issues such as insurance, clearing debris and working out how best to rebuild.

“In addition there is the emotional distress caused by the loss of homes, belongings, livestock, pets, fencing and more. Along the east coast and further inland our Vinnies members have been working closely with fire affected communities. Many have reported people saying they feel embarrassed to be asking for help, or who say others are more deserving, despite having lost their own homes.

“Through this outreach we hope to make contact with residents who may not have received the help they need, or have questions that our experienced volunteers can help answer.”

Ms Van Doorn said Vinnies has several tiers of financial grants, and on behalf of the Federal Government is also distributing Emergency Relief Funds to people in affected communities.

 

“We have distributed $3.8 million so far from the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal, mostly as direct cash payments for bushfire-impacted households. In addition, since the fires began last year large volumes of food, water, clothing, toiletries, bedding and other essentials have been provided by Vinnies volunteers in their local communities.”

Ms Van Doorn added that, “As well as financial and material support Vinnies volunteers provide emotional and psychological support, and referrals to professional services when needed.”

Woodburn Evans Head RSL Club is at 11-13 McDonald Place, Evans Head. For details of this free Vinnies service ring 0429 334 154.