Vinnies Bushfire Appeal: How we're helping

23 January Update

During the bushfire crisis, Vinnies volunteers are on the ground in hundreds of communities across the country, helping people as they deal with the immediate aftermath of fires. Our volunteers live and work in the impacted communities and will stay alongside those people affected for the long months of recovery ahead.

Vinnies has distributed more than $2.4 million nationally with a further $250,000 already processed for distribution in the coming days – totalling $2.65million from the Vinnies Bushfire Appeal funds. In addition, we have disbursed significant amounts of material goods including food, water, clothing and bedding from our Vinnies stores.

Thanks to the generosity of everyone who has donated, our volunteers have been able to provide immediate assistance including:

  • providing food, clothing, essential items and grocery vouchers for people who have lost everything;
  • giving urgent cash payments to affected families and paying household bills as people work through the recovery process; 
  • directly supporting with crisis accommodation through our own services or making referrals onto a range of other organisations and specialised services; and
  • giving much-needed emotional support and counselling.

If you have been affected by bushfires, please call 13 18 12 for assistance.

For more information you can read our media release.

     

 

 

Stories from our volunteers

Meredith and Mouna

When Vinnies volunteers Meredith and Mouna saw the news about the bushfires, they immediately put up their hands to help those affected. They met with a family at a motel in south Sydney where they had fled after fires in the Shoalhaven. 

After engaging with mum and the children to hear about their situation and work out how Vinnies might help, they learned that mum was in a tough spot, with three kids including a toddler with special needs and no car to get around. 

Mouna and Meredith helped mum access a $1,000 emergency payment from donations to our Vinnies Bushfire Appeal.  Vinnies covered the cost of two additional days of motel accommodation and provided some clothing and essentials for their stay. 

 

Vince Ryan

35% of the NSW Mid Coast region has been burnt out by fires. Vinnies member, Deacon Vince Ryan and his colleagues have been hard at work, visiting community members and assessing their needs since late last year. We are supporting people who are uninsured to clear the damage from their properties and giving urgent financial assistance to repair and replace water tanks and pumps, solar generators, fencing and other essential household items that have been destroyed. 

"One of the big parts of our work is having a connection with people," Vince said. "Mental health is a big factor in the recovery effort. We get to know these people and let them know we are here to support them in the coming weeks and months."