Bushfire Recovery News and Updates

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Our bushfire recovery page was created to support those in the Orara Valley, and other communities within our local government area, as they recover from the November 2019 bushfires.


There is a range of assistance available for local households, businesses, industries and landholders.

Coffs Harbour City Council is working in collaboration with the emergency services, State and Federal government agencies, charities and others to deliver this assistance.

Service NSW Bushfire Customer Care Service

For people impacted by bushfire, the NSW Bushfire Customer Care Service will help you navigate the support and financial assistance that's available across all levels of government

Our bushfire recovery page was created to support those in the Orara Valley, and other communities within our local government area, as they recover from the November 2019 bushfires.


There is a range of assistance available for local households, businesses, industries and landholders.

Coffs Harbour City Council is working in collaboration with the emergency services, State and Federal government agencies, charities and others to deliver this assistance.

Service NSW Bushfire Customer Care Service

For people impacted by bushfire, the NSW Bushfire Customer Care Service will help you navigate the support and financial assistance that's available across all levels of government.

Service NSW provides one-on-one support for people and businesses.

They can help with:

  • Accommodation advice
  • Relevant charitable services
  • Mental health and wellbeing services
  • Support for businesses
  • Clean-up services
  • Financial assistance
  • Grants and rebates
  • Insurance and legal support
  • Replacing lost ID
  • Volunteer RFS and SES payments.

Call 13 77 88 or visit the Service NSW website to register for a callback.

Community Consultation

This page will be used periodically for community consultation to learn what ideas our community may have for recovery and to find ways to improve disaster management in future events.

As of April 2020, Council has undertaken a series of community consultations with Orara Valley
residents and the broader community to inform the development of the proposed Program of Works for recovery including:

  • Community meetings at Nana Glen Community Hall on 28 January 2020 and 11 March 2020
  • A ‘Have Your Say’ survey on this page which received 42 responses
  • Telephone and in-person interviews with Nana Glen residents and Orara Valley businesses

Feedback has also been consolidated by the Acting Community Recovery Officer and from the community-led Orara Valley Bushfire Recovery Working Group

Additionally, Council has consulted internally and with the NSW Rural Fire Service.

'Sign Up' on this page to stay informed on further opportunities for consultation as well as community recovery updates.

  • Bushfire Funding: Have Your Say

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    To find out more information and to Have Your Say about bushfire recovery funding for Community Recovery and Resilience, Community Preparedness and Environmental Recovery please click on the Surveys & Forms tab and Complete Form.

    Please feel free to contact Melinda Brooks on Email: melinda.brooks@chcc.nsw.gov.au or Phone: 6648 4840


  • National Bushfire Recovery Agency: Commonwealth Bushfire Relief and Recovery Funding Factsheet

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    Helping Australians recover from the recent bushfires is a national priority.

    The Australian Government has committed $2 billion to the National Bushfire Recovery Fund (NBRF).

    The fund is allocated to the bushfire recovery programs listed on the FACTSHEET. To help get this money to people fast, the Australian Government have delivered most of these programs through State and Territory Governments and local councils.

    In addition, the Australian Government have enlisted charities to disseminate a portion of the funds as emergency relief; this money is managed separately to public donations.

    One billion dollars from the NBRF has been spent so far. This money has either already been spent or is being reimbursed to State and Territory Governments for help they deliver on behalf of the Australia Government.

    In addition, the Australian Government has also used other existing disaster support funding mechanisms including disaster recovery payments and allowances, to provide an additional $417 million to communities.

    Funding is rolling out over a two-year period. This means people and communities have time to think about their recovery needs, and can seek support at their own pace according to their individual circumstances.

  • Glenreagh HeartStart: Financial Assistance and Gift Vouchers

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    If you are in need of financial assistance for something urgent or have incurred bushfire costs and would like to be reimbursed, contact Glenreagh HeartStart.

    HeartStart are working with the Orara Valley Progress Association, who have limited funds available, to assist in meeting your financial needs. As a demonstration of commitment, anyone directly affected by bushfire who contacts HeartStart will be entitled to receive a $100 gift voucher.

    Property Issues

    Fencing materials, earthworks hire, sewerage works, tree felling, power poles, small sheds, etc.

    Personal & Household Items

    Clothing & footwear, vehicle repairs, linen, cooking, heating, refrigeration, etc.

    Living Expenses

    Phone & power bills, rates, insurances, legal fees, etc.


    Contact: Faye Neil Mobile 0439 190 076 Email heartstart@glenreagh.org.au

  • Red Cross Webinar: Sharing the Challenges Faced by Volunteer Wildlife Carers

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    Australian Red Cross invites you to share and discuss the challenges of caring for wildlife as a volunteer first responder when faced with the additional complexity of disasters.

    Join Australian Red Cross as they host psychologist Lyn Page (member of the Australian Psychological Society Disaster Response Network and a Red Cross volunteer field psychologist) and founder and CEO of Two Green Threads Suzy Nethercott-Watson as they explore these challenges.

    Two Green Threads is a registered charity supporting the people that rescue and care for our wildlife.

    Online via Zoom - Please register by clicking on your preferred webinar time:

    Wed 10 June 11:00am: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_xWG7qG1QQ_WiHSTR7HcVlQ

    Wed 10 June 7:30pm: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_nwjhVUwdQuebjVi1Aod_sQ

    Please send your questions for Lyn and Suzy through to recovery@redcross.org.au

  • Red Cross Webinar: Supporting Community Service Organisations Through Disaster Recovery

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    Are you a neighbourhood centre, community service or grass roots organisation working hard to support your community as they recover from the Black Summer bushfires?

    Australian Red Cross Disaster Recovery Advisors and Mentors Australia (DRAMA) invites you to join them as they host Kris Newton, Manager of Mountains Community Resource Network and Anne Crestani, Manager of Step by Step Recovery Support Service as they share their own experiences and learnings of working within the post-disaster community recovery space.

    This webinar will provide community organisations with insight on how to navigate formal recovery arrangements and how the work they do can support critical community-led long-term recovery.

    Audience: Community service and grass root organisations, neighbourhood houses etc.

    Thursday 4th June 2020

    Time: 3:00pm

    Please register by clicking on the webinar link below:

    https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_XO5-l5KcT7elHhRZz2uT3Q

  • Clean-Up Update

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    BlazeAid continue to assist residents in the Orara Valley and to-date have replaced 40 km of fencing. Laing O’Rourke have been on-the-ground for approximately three weeks and have completed clean-up on 12 of the 18 properties registered. Registration can be accessed on the Service NSW website under NSW Bushfire Clean-Up.

  • Red Cross Assistance Grants

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    The Red Cross is providing a re-establishment grant to help people who lost their primary place of residence in the bushfires to have somewhere safe to live in the medium-to-long term. The re-establishment grant was formerly called the rebuild grant, but it is now also open to people who were renting homes that were destroyed, and people who were living in non-permanent structures such as caravans, or mobile homes that were destroyed in the fires.

    Red Cross encourage you to apply. Please contact Melinda Brooks on 6648 4840 if you would like Red Cross support.

    Applictaion is online at the Red Cross website or phone 1800 733 276. If you have already received a Red Cross emergency grant you won’t need to provide information you have already provided.

  • Red Cross Recovery Basics

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    Coping with a disaster can be extremely distressing for those directly affected, as well as workers and volunteers supporting the community.

    A Recovery Basics session looks at:

    • Who is affected by a disaster
    • Typical psychological and social reactions after disasters
    • The impact of stress on recovering after a disaster
    • Looking after yourself and others

    Tuesday, 19th May - 02:00-4.00pm, via Zoom.

    REGISTRATION LINK - https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ayODGRj6S12mn_pBWgBJ6Q


    For more information

    Phone: Eleanor Harris 0426 916 984

    Email: eharris@redcross.org.au

  • Architects Assist - Disaster Recovery Assistance

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    Architects Assist is an initiative by the built environment industry to help and support those affected by the Australian bushfire crisis and help communities ‘build back better’. If you lost your home and have limited or no funds to rebuild you can request help with Architects Assist. If you are a registered architect you can offer free assistance to those in need.

  • Red Cross Assistance Grants

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    Immediate assistance is available for bushfire-affected people in financial hardship.

    The Primary Residence Repair Grant has been extended to include repairs to critical private water or power infrastructure (i.e. water tanks, generators) or septic tanks.

    The Rebuild Grant is open to home owners whose primary place of residence has been destroyed or rendered permanently uninhabitable. This grant is for owner occupiers facing continued financial hardship, who intend to start the early stages of planning to rebuild their home.

    Applications for grants will remain open until June 30 2020. Please contact the Coffs Harbour Community Recovery Officer on phone 6648 4840 or email melinda.brooks@chcc.nsw.gov.au if you have any questions.

Page last updated: 27 August 2021, 17:06