Supporting Communities in Recovery program update

8 July 2020

Over $367,000 has been released so far in 2020 for bushfire recovery initiatives in affected South Eastern NSW communities, following Round 1 of COORDINARE’s Bushfire Recovery: Supporting Communities in Recovery program.

Grants of up to $10,000 were available to community organisations for activities that strengthened social connectedness and emotional wellbeing, and assisted communities to recover and heal from the 2019-20 summer bushfires.

Almost 100 applications were received under Round 1; an unprecedented response which demonstrates the extent to which local communities were impacted by the devastating summer bushfires. The many events and activities funded are as diverse as the communities represented across our vast region and can be viewed here.

One very popular activity that attracted over 180 participants was the ‘Leaf by Leaf’ art therapy workshop held in March at Malua Bay’s Batemans Bay Surf Life Saving Club (an identified community safe place where hundreds of people evacuated on several occasions during the bushfires). Workshop participants painted leaves and placed them on a tree painted on a canvas which, over the course of three days, evolved into an art installation, with themes ranging from messages to government, fire-fighters, and lost loved ones; as well as landscapes and regeneration.

The final artwork was presented to the Surf Life Saving Club in recognition of their role in keeping the community safe during the bushfires. The workshop was instrumental in connecting with residents, including some who were identified as needing additional support.

Photo source: Family Place Eurobodalla Facebook group

Community, COORDINARE news, Mental health, Southern NSW