Our District's response to the Bushfires

Late last week, Premier Daniel Andrews declared a State of Disaster as Victoria’s bushfire crisis worsened and NSW has been declared a State of Emergency.

Firstly, we must remember that Rotary is a secondary or tertiary response community server organisation (ie recovery and restoration of the towns), and any plans or projects must be aligned to the State Health Emergency Response and Recovery Arrangements and with the Rotary Districts in the effected areas.

As such, last night I spoke to my counterparts in D9820 (the area covering East Gippsland) and D9790 (the area covering Albury/Wodonga and Upper Murray) to determine how clubs and Rotarians within D9810 can assist them.

D9820 have officially sanctioned the clubs of East Gippsland to form the East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid committee.

The Rotarians involved in this committee are working with the East Gippsland Shire and will be involved in the recovery and restoration once all the fires have been extinguished.

These Rotarians are active within their local clubs and also active members of their local communities with strong community connections. Rotary as an organisation is a well trusted organisation within East Gippsland. The Rotarians of D9820 are currently assessing and waiting to see what is required once the fires are out, and full consultation is occurring with the local communities before any action is taken.

To assist those in East Gippsland, the East Gippsland Rotary Fire Aid project has been created.

Donations can be made to the following account.

Account details are:
Rotary Club of Bairnsdale – Project Account
Bendigo Bank BSB 633-000
Account Number 165960451

The Rotary Club of Bairnsdale are managing the funds, as they are set up to receive donations from multiple sources, divert the money accordingly and report back to D9820 on how the funds raised have been distributed.

For Clubs within D9810 who would like to donate funds towards the Bushfire relief that District 9790 (Albury/Wodonga and Upper Murray) will be contributing to, donations should be paid into the Rotary District 9790 bank account, please put your Club and Bushfire as reference :
DISTRICT FUND BSB 633 000 Account 140378365

For those of you wanting to make donations to other fire affected areas of Australia, RAWCS (Rotary Australia World Community Service) have changed their home page to:

Rotary National Bushfires Appeal – DONATE NOW

When making a donation you can request the money goes to certain area or it will go into a pool and be distributed across the country on a needs basis.

At the February board meeting, the board will discuss D9810 making a donation from our Emergency Disaster Fund.

The situation across Australia is dire. Please be safe.

Future updates will be forthcoming from both D9820 and D9790, but please don’t hesitate to contact me.

Kind Regards

Shia Smart
District Governor 2019-20