4 February 2021
Bega Valley Shire Council Mayor Russell Fitzpatrick has reached out to Western Australian communities currently battling bushfires, offering support and experience drawn from Council’s own learnings in disaster response and recovery.
“Our thoughts are with those who have been impacted and are currently under threat across the shires of Mundaring, Chittering and Northam and in the City of Swan,” Cr Fitzpatrick said.
“Our experiences as a Council and community mean we have built considerable knowledge and solid processes and programs coming out of the 2018 Tathra/Reedy Swamp and Yankees Gap fire events and more recently the Black Summer bushfires.
“Council is offering support through sharing what we have learned and developed through these events and stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Western Australia.
Cr Fitzpatrick said local government was a close and supportive sector, coming together during challenging times to pitch in and provide much welcome skills and resources.
“Many Councils reached out to us during the 2018 fire events and again last year. They had our back and we have done the same for other Councils and will continue to do so,” he said.
“The fires in Western Australia are an unsettling reminder of our own bushfire tragedies.
“The images currently circulating in the media and online will bring back memories and responses across the Shire.
“It’s important we continue to look after each other by reaching out and checking that friends, neighbours and loved ones are ok.
“If you are affected by Western Australia’s bushfire images, please contact the Bega Valley Bushfire Recovery Support Service on (02) 6499 2345, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the 24-hour Mental Health Line on 1800 011 511.