CatholicCare Bushfire Relief program open to Coast residents

Firefighters protecting homes around Charmhaven during the New Year’s Eve bushfire 2019/2020. Photo: NSWRFS

Central Coast families who’ve been financially impacted by the summer bushfires are being encouraged to apply for support under a new bushfire relief program.

CatholicCare Diocese of Broken Bay recently received Federal funding to launch their Bushfire Relief program and they’re now keen to hear from any Central Coast residents who lost their homes or who had their property damaged by a bushfire.

According to Bushfire Relief Funding Manager, Nicci Rowe, since the funding came online later than other bushfire relief programs and with COVID-19, CatholicCare Broken Bay have been struggling to reach residents who could benefit from their program and they’re now taking a more direct approach to get the word out.

“We acknowledge that we’ve been given this funding late in the game, but we want Central Coast residents to know that we’re here and that support is available to them,” Rowe said.

According to Rowe, the Bushfire Relief program can cover a range of needs from repair work to bill support and that CatholicCare Broken Bay was particularly keen to hear from any residents who are still dealing with the aftermath of the Gospers Mountain Fire or the Charmhaven New Year’s Eve bushfire.

Given the timing, Rowe said the program was also able to provide support and assistance for more late stage recovery projects as well as futureproofing projects.

“We know that a lot of homes were smoke damaged, and we can help there.

“The program can also provide financial support for things like gardens, fences and sheds that might have been damaged, white goods, landscaping works including clean up, water tanks and the list goes on,” Rowe said.

With the program’s next lot of promotions going live this week Rowe wants residents to feel confident reaching out.

“For a lot of people 2020 has just been trauma on top of trauma and we want people to know that there is still bushfire help available.

“At the end of the day this program is about assisting those who have been impacted by bushfire in a way that’s best for them, so Central Coast residents should feel comfortable reaching out to discuss what they need and we will do our best to help,” Rowe said.

Any residents interested in learning more about CatholicCare Broken Bay’s Bushfire Relief program can do so by contact their Emergency Relief Officer, Amanda Anello, on 0481 220 354, or by visiting CatholicCare Diocese of Broken Bay’s website.

Dilon Luke

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