The Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund (GERF) has launched an appeal to support those impacted by the current Gippsland fires, as locals count the cost of major blazes continuing to burn across the region.
GERF President John Mitchell said three applications for assistance had already been received. While these had been approved and paid to families, further payments are expected to flow in the coming days and weeks as agencies move in to assess the damage.
“We know there are people in our communities who need immediate help with practical things like clothing, food, furniture, bedding and fencing while insurance and government claims are being processed,” Mr Mitchell said.
Mr Mitchell urged communities to dig deep and give what they can.
“Gippsland and other communities, including businesses, have traditionally shown great generosity by donating to GERF both during and after emergency events.
“We’re hoping to once again see a great response, so that we can help locals get back on their feet.”
Donations can be made at any branch of the NAB bank across Australia, or in person at Alan Wilson Insurance Brokers at 40 Argyle Street Traralgon.
“Those who’d like to donate at an NAB bank branch will simply need to let the teller know they wish to make a donation to the Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund.
“All donations over $2 are tax deductable, so it’s important to provide the NAB teller with your name and address so that GERF can mail you a receipt,” Mr Mitchell said.
Donations can also be made by sending a cheque or money order to Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund, PO Box 508 Traralgon VIC 3844.
Residents affected by the fires should contact their local council Municipal Recovery Manager, who will assess the applicant’s situation and then make a referral to GERF where applicable.
The Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund was established in 1978, and is operated by local volunteers for Gippsland communities affected by natural disaster events. Further information is available at www.gerf.org.au.