Victorian bushfires & how to help

[DRuG]NikT (09 Feb 2009 06:58 pm)
By now most of you will be aware of the tragic circumstances that have evolved over the weekend as a result of the uncontrolled forest fires that have ravaged much of rural Victoria. Not only has there been unprecedented loss of life and property, but even people who have not been directly affected have been severely traumatised by the impact on family, colleagues and friends as detailed in the graphic news reports of these events. This comes after some weeks of severe heat, and disrupted transport and power services.

I would like to offer my personal condolences to anyone who has sustained personal loss in the tragedy, and urge that we work together to address the impact that the fires have had on our community. One example of how you can contribute, is to not make light of what, for many people, may involve the loss of a family member or home.

Monetary Donations
You can make a donation to the Bushfire Fund via credit card by visiting the Red Cross website or by phoning 1800 811 700. Donations over $2 are tax deductible.

Donations of Goods
The Red Cross is not requesting or accepting donations of goods at this time. The Federal Government is making funds available to the families and communities affected to enable them to purchase emergency supplies.

The Red Cross is compiling a list of people who have registered their interest to volunteer, however they are not yet in a position to utilise this list. We encourage people interested in volunteering to await further information before contacting any agencies.

Much respect to those who have already made donations, new information about ways to help will be posted as it comes to hand.

At this point, please join me in keeping in your thoughts the families and communities affected, as well as the emergency services and humanitarian agencies who are working hard to combat continuing bushfires and coordinate critical relief efforts.

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